Micro-Enterprise Development Programme (MEDEP)


Over eighty percent of Nepal’s population live in rural areas. Inadequate income generating opportunities in these areas have been a major cause of widespread poverty and outflow of productive workforce abroad.  With aims to cater the needs of socially excluded groups living below the poverty lines by promoting off-farm employment, the Government of Nepal (GoN) and the UNDP started implementing Micro Enterprise Development Program (MEDEP) in 1998. Read more

What have we accomplished so far

In 2016, the focus of MEDEP was to ensure a full Government ownership of this poverty-reduction vehicle and to further strengthen micro enterprise associations’ ability to deliver business development services for their members. Despite the challenges resulting from the earthquake in 2014 April and the significant loss to the gains MEDEP had made in the previous years, several milestones were reached in 2016.

13,243 new micro entrepreneurs were created, thus helping to alleviate their poverty conditions, exceeding the project target of 18,270. Till date, MEDEP (including MEDPA & Local Bodies) has created 119,085 microenterprises and contributed to the creation of over 187,358 jobs for the rural poor and socially excluded groups.


Breaking age-old barriers

Running a successful enterprise has not only given Muna Odh a lifeline out of poverty, but also hardened her resolve to help others from the Dalit community break free of the rigid hold of the caste systemmore 

Weaves of change

A carpet-making enterprise started by 25 women in Darchula supported by UNDP has proven their ticket to improved livelihoods, strengthened confidence and the preservation of an age-old craftmore 

Stronger together

MEDEP-supported cooperatives have given entrepreneurs across Nepal, women in particular, the chance to take business opportunities they would have otherwise been hard-pressed to pursue, as well as assume decision-making roles in their communitiesmore 

Hailing the big impact of small business

UNDP celebrated the first Micro, Small and Medium-Sized Enterprise Day with an exhibition of products made by the micro-entrepreneurs supported by its Micro-Enterprise Development Programme, as a testament to the power of small business more 

Wider horizons

Sunti Purja is among the many female entrepreneurs who—despite having little to no formal education—have managed to set up their own businesses and come to be role models for their communities, bolstered by backing received from UNDP’s Micro-Enterprise Development Programme more 

A life sweetened with honey

How the support of UNDP’s Micro-Enterprise Development Programme offered an entrepreneur in Parbat options for livelihood and a way out of poverty he had never imagined possible more 

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