While making significant progress, Nepal fell short of meeting all targets under Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by the end of 2015. In terms of poverty reduction, the failure to “achieve full and productive employment and decent work for all, including women and young people,” was notable. The massive earthquake in April 2015 further undermined efforts to reduce poverty by taking lives of thousands, destroying public and private infrastructures worth billions of dollars. An estimated additional 700,000 people were pushed back to poverty, while thousands more lost their livelihood opportunities for decent living.
UNDP works closely with government and communities through several projects and programmes to bring about a reduction in poverty and inclusive growth.
Amongst both donor and recipient countries, the effective and responsible use of aid has become a central priority in recent years. Nepal is a signatory to the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness, the Busan Commitment and the High-Level Meeting of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Co- operation and participant in the UN’s Third Financing for Development conference that took place in Addis Ababa in July 2015.
With the support from Denmark, United Kingdom (DFID), United States (USAID), the Developing Capacities for Effective Aid Management and Coordination (DCEAMC) project was established at the request of the Ministry of Finance in 2009 to institutionalize an aid management information system in order to effectively manage and coordinate international development cooperation that plays a crucial role in Nepal’s development.
As a result of the Aid Management Platform (AMP), transparency and accountability of aid information in Nepal has improved in recent years.
After the 2015 earthquake, UNDP provided technical support to the government to adapt the aid management system to the sudden increase in emergency and reconstruction funding from donors. As the National Reconstruction Authority (NRA) takes over reconstruction, the aid system will be used to track funding, monitor the use of funds and ensure funding is spent efficiently with every dollar accounted for.
Accurate data and information are critical to effective decision-making. That’s why the Strengthening National Planning and Monitoring Capacity (SNPMC) project, co-funded by DFID and run jointly by UNDP and the National Planning Commission (NPC), works to enhance evidence-based planning and policy making by supporting the improvement of data collection systems at the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) and the incorporation of that data into policies designed by the NPC. The project aims to strengthen the national M&E system and undertaking policy advocacy and institutional capacity building to support the formulation of pro-poor and inclusive growth policies.
Since 1998, the Micro Enterprise Development Programme (MEDEP) has been the flagship poverty reduction programme of the UNDP and the Government of Nepal. MEDEP, currently in its fourth phase, is funded by the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and Central Queensland University. It continues to contribute to the Government of Nepal’s overarching goal of poverty alleviation through its micro-enterprise development based employment creation approach. The programme is trying to internalize this approach within government structures to make the micro enterprises sustainable beyond the scope of the project. This is being done by building Government and private sector capacity in promoting sustainable micro-enterprise development. MEDEP has demonstrated a viable model of poverty alleviation and social inclusion through optimum use of local resources, indigenous skills and collaboration for sustainable livelihoods. A study on gender and social inclusion impact of MEDEP interventions conducted in 2014 supports this conclusion.
The Livelihood Recovery Programme (LRP), a UNDP Nepal project nearing the end of its lifespan after six years in operation, was scaled up and adapted to quickly respond to the earthquake in 2015 to restore and revitalize critical infrastructure damaged by the disaster. With funding from the Government of Mauritius, UNDP was rapidly able to adapt the project's model to earthquake-a ected areas. The LRP model, a bottom-up approach, has proved to be very successful in helping the ultra-poor in conflict and disaster prone areas of three districts in Tarai to overcome development impediments.
These projects have helped to bring about improved policies and institutional frameworks for inclusive growth whilst directly benefitting tens of thousands of community people through skill training, short term employment, improved local infrastructure and improved access to financial services.