By Our Reporter
Nepal is one of the least developed countries in the world and the poorest nation in South Asia. But a recent revelation by the Swiss National Bank — the central bank of Switzerland — shows otherwise–funds parked by Nepalis increased by four times in a decade from 2008. Coincidentally, more money from Nepal was found to be parked in the Swiss Banks since the Maoists reached the power suggesting whether the former Maoist leaders, including Pushpa Kamal Dahal, who are accused of amassing property, have been depositing money from Nepal in Switzerland over the years.
In 2008, Nepalis had parked 86.22 million Swiss francs in the Swiss bank and at the end of 2017 the amount rose to 322.88 million Swiss francs.
According to the amount parked in Swiss banks, Nepal ranks 109th among over 200 nations. The United Kingdom, the United States of America, the West Indies, France and Germany are in the top five spots.
Though Nepali citizens are not allowed to transfer funds to foreign bank accounts, funds parked by Nepalis in Swiss banks have surprisingly been increasing in a decade. Nepalis’ fund, according to the Bank, has been constantly rising since 2014 when the parked amount of Nepalis reached 102.22 million Swiss francs It rose to 314. 43 million francs in 2015 and in 2017 it reached 322.88 million francs.
Swiss banks maintain strict privacy of account holders, making it difficult to identify individuals parking funds in Swiss banks, but it is assumed that Nepali business people and politicians have been holding such accounts in Swiss banks.
Obviously, the money parked by Nepalis in the Swiss Bank was siphoned off illegally through hundi, over-invoicing in imports and other ways.
A few years ago, the Panama Papers had revealed names of some Nepali businessmen parking funds in tax havens. Politicians, businessmen, bureaucrats, criminals and influential people who have gathered wealth through illegal means seek secret places to park funds and Swiss banks, which are renowned for maintaining the secrecy of their clients, have become safe place to keep their money.
During the Panchayat period, there were rumours that a Nepali woman named Pampha Devi had kept money in the Swiss Bank, and she was said to be the next name of none-other than late Queen Aishwarya. However, this report was proved baseless, it was made a big issue for depositing the money in the foreign bank during the 1990 political movement. But in 28, years several Pamphas have born, the swelling funds of Nepalis in the Swiss Banks prove this.
Obviously, corruption is rampant in the country and the politicians themselves are involved in the corrupt practices and in protecting the corrupt persons. As such, the practice of depositing money in foreign banks will not come under control unless a merciless crack-down is made on the corrupt politicians, bureaucrats and businessmen.
Nepalis’ deposit in Swiss Bank increases surprisingly
By Our Reporter