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Widening Banking and Insurance Services

Widening Banking and Insurance Services to Community is a priority in Nepal

Published: 11 December 2018

Dr. Chirajibi Nepal, Governor of Nepal Rastra Bank (Central Bank) stressed that the key priority for Finance Sector Development in Nepal is to reach out to those who are denied access to formal financial services in the community. As per available statistics, 90% of the citizens do not have insurance cover, and 40% of the populations are excluded from the formal financial services.

Governor of Nepal Central Bank was the guest of honour delivered the keynote speech at the recently concluded Tripartite Social Dialogue on Banking and Financial Sector Issues in Kathmandu, Nepal. Social dialogue was initiated by the Financial Institute Employees’ Union of Nepal [FIEUN] with the support of SASK Finland, and UNI Apro.

Dr. Chirajibi Nepal insisted that banks spend the minimum of 3% of the personnel budgets on capacity development of the employees, and welcomed the social dialogue organized by the FIEUN to discuss matters of mutual interest amongst all stakeholders as a watchdog of the industry.

A discussion paper was presented by Mr Nar Bahadur Thapa, Executive Director Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) focusing on the areas of financial sector development-oriented policy reforms, for mergers between financial institutions for the stability of the industry and to improve the regulatory effectiveness on shadow banking activities of non-banking entities.

The dialogue outcomes affirmed the priority areas to widen financial inclusions with the support of the digital technological advancement to stimulate growth in the economy, with adequate upskilling and reskilling opportunities extended to the employees to reach out to those marginalized to increase financial literacy in the society.

The multi-stakeholder group consisted CEO’s of Commercial Banks, Principal officials of Nepal Bankers Association, Microfinance Bankers’ Association, regulatory and supervision officials from the NRB, trade union officials of the FIEUN affiliates and UNI NLC officials joined in to lively discussions to harness employee engagement to offer new customer experiences under a decent working conditions in the finance industry in Nepal.

Padam Raj Regmi President of the FIEUN  moderated the dialogue process thanked all the sponsors and the participants for joining the social dialogue and contributing for the lively discussions.

 

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A Report on Anti-Harassment Campaign

A Report on Anti-Harassment Campaign

Organized by: FIEUN Women Committee

Date: 7th September 2018

In order to celebrate hindu’s popular festival Teej, FIEUN women committee organized an anti-harassment program and teej celebration program at Siddhartha Foodland, Purano Baneshwor. In the morning session about 40 women employees from different financial organizations (both public and private sector) have participated in Anti-harassment training and campaign. The morning session training started at 10 A.M. The issue of the meeting was focused around one of the most eminent topics “Workplace harassment; women’s concern, response and prevention”. FIEUN has invited one of the famous media person from Nepal Television (NTV), Mrs. Arati Chataut. She is currently a director of NTV and also a gender analyst. Another resource person for the training was Mr. Subarna Karmacharya, a director of Nepal Trade Union Congress (NTUC). And the last session of the training was carried out by Mrs. Bandana Sharma, Vice President (Women) of FIEUN national committee. All of the classes were focused around the periphery of Workplace harassments issues in context of Nepalese sector organizations, current Anti-Harassment Act 2071 of Nepal and critical analysis of this act and also the preventive measures to combat such issues in workplace.

At the first keynote presentation “Workplace Harassment; Women’s Concern and Response” sister Arati Chataut (Director, Nepal Television), demonstrate about different types of harassments, women workers are facing at both private and public-sector organizations. As the financial institutions seem to be one of the safer and decent workplace from outside but, according to different incidents, it has been analyzed that it is not safer from inside. Different harassments are done to the women workers at the name of Performance Appraisal. Therefore, in order to combat such grievances women should have strong will power from inside, should be educated and all job segregation should be avoided in order to be entered in all types of jobs.

On the second keynote presentation “Women Workers Rights in Nepal; implementation in workplace” brother Subarna Karmacharya (Director, Nepal Trade Union Congress), highlights about Acts and policies that has been implemented in Nepal’s interim constitutions. He also reveals about different clause and sub clauses present on women workplace rights and social security in Nepal’s government. He also gave examples of different types of rights that are present to protect women and secure her job at the time of maternity in many developed countries like Denmark and Finland. Lastly, he ended the presentation by giving a good example of a Nepalese housewife, who is enrolled in every household activities but, the social eye towards her is just a jobless woman without any work to do.

On the third keynote presentation “Discrimination and Harassment Free Workplace” sister Bandana Sharma (Vice President (Women), FIEUN), demonstrated about research carried out by FIEUN and discusses major analysis found from that research report. She also reveals about the loop-holes present in current Anti-harassment Act of Nepal ,2071 B.S and what can be the upcoming strategies to struggle against such harassments issue in Nepalese sector organizations.

After the first morning session of training the second session started around 2 P.M and was focused on celebration of Hindu Women great festival Teej, a religious, social and cultural festival in Nepal. Around 70 The second session program was Chaired by Women Committee’s Acting President, Mrs. Tika Kala Sharma.The program started with the welcoming remarks of Vice President (Women) of Fieun, Bandana Sharma and teej wishes greetings from two female leaders of Nepal Trade Union Congress, Asha Singh Rathor and Radhika Kuikel. Fraternal greetings of brother Padam Raj regmi (President, FIEUN)

At Last, respected Meena pandey as Chief Guest of the event (Member of Parliament of Nepali congress party) puts her concluding remarks on the auspicious occasion of teej and greetings to all the women participated.

Finally, the program ended up with a wonderful lunch at the periphery and sharing of greetings.

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धितोपत्र बोर्डका निर्देशक…

धितोपत्र बोर्डका निर्देशक डा.अधिकारीले भने, ‘अर्थमन्त्रीको अनुत्पादक शब्द पूँजीगत लाभकर बढ्दा सेयर बजार धरासयी

२०७५ भदौ ९ (August 25, 2018)

धितोपत्र बोर्डले निर्देशक डा. नवराज अधिकारीले सरकारले बजेटमार्फत सेयर खरिदबिक्री वापतको पूँजीगत लाभकर बढाउनु गलत भएको बताएका छन् । ‘यदि सेयर बजार बुझेका अर्थमन्त्री हुन् भने सेयर लाग्दै आएको पूँजीगत लाभकर बढाउनु हुँदैन्थ्यो,’ नेपाल वित्तीय संस्था कर्मचारी संघको कार्यक्रममा कार्यपत्र प्रस्तुत गर्दै उनले भने, ‘सरकारको अल्पकालिन सोचका कारण सेयर बजारमा समस्या उत्पन्न भएको छ ।’

अर्थतन्त्रको बागडोर सम्हाल्ने व्यक्तिले पूँजी बजारलाई अनुत्पादक क्षेत्र भन्दिदा समग्र लगानीकर्ताको मनोवल खस्किएको समेत उनको आरोप थियो । सरकारले कर संकलनको नाममा सेयरमा पूँजीगत लाभकर बढाउँदा सरकारी ढुकुटीमा जम्मा हुने राजस्वमा झन संकुचन आएको समेत उनले जानकारी दिए ।

सेयर कारोबारमा लाग्ने व्यक्तिगत पूँजीगत लाभकर ५ प्रतिशतबाट साढे ७ प्रतिशत पुर्याउँदा बजारमा कारोबार रकममा समेत उल्लेख्य गिरावट आएको उनको तर्क थियो । ‘सरकारले बजेट ल्याउनुपूर्व बजारमा दैनिक १ अर्ब रुपैयाँ बराबरको कारोबार हुँदै आएको थियो,’ उनले भने, ‘पूँजीगत लाभकरकै कारण अहिले दैनिक कारोबार १७ देखि २० करोड रुपैयाँमा खुम्चिएको छ ।’ जसका कारणले सरकाले सेयर कारोबारबाट प्राप्त गर्ने राजस्वमा समेत अघिल्लो आर्थिक बर्षको तुलनामा गत आबमा उल्लेख्य गिरावट आएको उनको भनाई थियो ।

यस अघि धितोपत्र बोर्डले धितोपत्र सुचिकरण विनियमावलीमा बोर्डले कम्पनीको सुचिकरण शुल्क घटाई स्वीकृतिका लागि पठाएकोमा नेप्सेको बोर्डबाट पुर्नविचार गर्न बोर्डबाट माग भएबमोजिम नै शुल्क राखी पठाउनु पर्ने बाध्यता भएको समेत उनले खुलस्त पारे । कारले पछिल्लो समय वित्तीय सुधारका नाममा स्वायत्त निकायलाई आफु मातहत राख्न खोजेको र त्यसले आगामी दिनमा वित्तीय अस्थिरता निम्त्याउने समेत उनले जानकारी दिए ।

विशेषगरी सरकारले बीमा सम्बन्धी ऐनलाई आफु अनुकुल परिमार्जन गरी बीमाको दायरालाई संकुचन गर्न लागेको समेत उनको आरोप थियो । सरकारले समितिलाई प्राधिकरण बनाउदा बीमा समितिका कर्मचारीलाई स्वत प्राधिकरणमा कर्मचारी हुनेछन् भन्नु पर्नेमा सो व्यवस्था हटाएर गलत गरेको समेत उनको आरोप थियो । यसैगरी ससरकाले बीमा शुल्कमा शुन्य दमलव ५ प्रतिशतका दरले कर लगाउँदा बीमा व्यवसाय झन संकुचन हुने समेत उनले जानकारी दिए ।

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FIEUN Organizes workshop….

FIEUN Organizes workshop on “Nepalese Financial System Policy Issues, Reform and Development

25th August 2018

Financial Institute Employees Union Nepal, National Committee has organized a workshop program on current issues of “Nepalese Financial System Policy Issues, Reform and development. The main presenter on the topic “Current policy issues, reform and development of Nepalese financial system” was Dr. Nabaraj Adhikari, Director of Security Board of Nepal (SEBON). The program was chaired by president of FIEUN, Mr. Padam Raj Regmi and the chief guest was Dr. Ram Sharan Mahat, Past Finance Minister of Nepal. Other key note speakers were also invited to chair the desk. Mr. Bal Krishna Khand, Chief Whip of Nepali congress parliament, Dr. Nar Bahadur Basnet, Executive Director of Nepal Rastriya Bank, Dr. Bimal Koirala, Past Chief Secretary. Guest speakers of Nepal’s Parliament MP, Mr. Rajan K.C, MP, Mr. Sanjaya Gautam, MP, Mrs. Parmila Rai, MP, Mr. Divyamani Rajbhandari were present on the program. President of Nepal Trade Union Congress Mr. Puskar Acharya was also present to chair as a guest speaker.

CEO’s of Insurance companies and BFI’s. Presidents of Nepal’s financial organizations and other executives and employees of financial institutions were present to participate in the program.

The program was based on highlighting main loop holes in current Insurance policy and Security board.

Following Issues were discussed,

  1. About the revision in new Insurance Policy
  2. About the tax rate of Retirement benefit fund of Public sector employees have been raised from 5% to 15%.
  3. About the decrement of bonus rate in a new bonus act
  4. About Public Service commission interreference in other sectors crossing their existing boundary.

The program was successfully accomplished by FIEUN national committee and all the guest participants and chief guest has put forward a notable concluding remarks on those above issues. Every participants were provided a file with pen and notebook published by FIEUN with the FIEUN logo in it.

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Introduction

Financial Institute Employees Union (FIEUN) is one of the national level unions in Nepal. It represents finance sector employees in the country. Previously known as “Banking Karmachari Congress”was established in Baishakh, 2047 B.S. by leading democratic employees of banking sector. Later on Chaitra 22nd, 2047 B.S. it was renamed as “FIEUN” to accommodate all finance sector employees. It held its first Convention on 28th – 29th Magh, 2050 B.S. It was registered on 18th Magh, 2052 B.S. at Labor Department. So far, it has concluded its seven national conventions and six national council meetings.

It is affiliated to Nepal Trade Union Congress (NTUC) at national level and to Union Network International (UNI) at international level. It has 46 affiliates with more than 16,550 members altogether throughout the country.

Vision

To establish a powerful and professional national level union in finance sector by bringing all banking, insurance and other financial institutions’ employees having democratic socialist ideology under one umbrella.

Mission

To bring all organized and unorganized employees from banking, insurance and other financial sectors under union’s umbrella by sticking to trade union norms, values and ideology and establish them socially, politically powerful and financially sound and competent manpower.

Objectives

  • Be committed to nationality, democracy and socialism by developing democratic norms, values and system because employees’/workers’ rights and welfare are safeguarded only in multi-party democracy.
  • To organize all employees scattered in different financial sectors.
  • To protect and safeguard the professional rights and welfare of employees of all financial institutions established throughout the country.
  • To represent the union in policy making and management.
  • To develop fraternity with national and international organizations having same goals and principles.
  • To conduct and participate in different national and international level trainings, seminars, workshops etc. to develop employees’ professional skills and competence.
  • To organize and conduct different necessary and proper programs for the welfare of employees and their family.

Institutional Membership

Its members are enterprise level unions. Any of those unions seeking to get membership can apply for it. Upon fulfillment of requirements as per its statute, membership shall be awarded to them for which they are required to pay the specified sum of money as entry fee. The process of acquiring membership will be as per the statute of respective enterprise level unions.

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Activities:

  • Safeguarding Democracy and Trade Union Rights: The main purpose of FIEUN is to protect and safeguard trade union rights. In this regard, it is involved in creating awareness about the importance and necessity of trade union movement among employees and organizing them. In addition to this, it’s been playing a vital role to protect and develop democracy particularly when it is under threat.
  • Protecting and Developing Professional Rights and Welfare: FIEUN’s another concern is to protect and develop professional rights and welfare of the employees. As an effort to this end, it intervenes, as and when necessary, in policy making and gets involved with government and concerned bodies in terms of increasing different benefits for the employees.
  • Increasing Productivity: It is not focused only on the welfare of the employees but also on the development and productivity of enterprises. It raises voice against the discrepancies in the financial sector and, if necessary, exerts pressure on the government and concerned bodies. It provides opportunities to its member employees to participate at national and international level trainings, workshops, seminars etc. to acquire knowledge and develop professional skills so that they can contribute to increasing the productivity of their respective enterprises.
  • FIEUN Day: Every year on 22nd Chaitra, it observes FIEUN Day by organizing various creative programs to mark its anniversary.
  • Training Programs: Every year, it conducts different trainings for its members in current challenges, issues and threats facing financial sector with the assistance of NTUC, UNI, FES and SASK etc.
  • Organizing: It has adopted the strategy to expand the organization by bringing together both organized and unorganized employees from private sector banks, insurance companies, cooperatives and other financial institutions.
  •  Publication: Every year it publishes a calendar. Also it publishes a yearly souvenir magazine “Bittiya Darpan” featuring its annual activities and a quarterly “Bittiya Darpan Bulletin” including trade union education, national and international trade union activities.
  • Membership Database: It has its own membership database due to which record keeping and updating has been easier.
  • Skill-oriented Trainings: It involves its members in computer software training and English language class being offered by UNI Nepal. Besides this, it conducts Advanced Level Computer Course to meet its banking sector members’ professional requirements.

Threats

It has following threats:

  • Political volatility and impact of long term conflict
  • Narrowness in organized sector due to the deregulation in labor market
  • Management’s anti-union policy
  • Outsourcing and contract system
  • Downsizing of employees by means of Voluntary Retirement Scheme (VRS) and Compulsory Retirement Scheme (CRS)
  • Privatization, Liquidation and contract based Management in public enterprises
  • Taxation on provident fund which is against social security
  • Private sector’s anti union approach
  • Possible impact of upcoming state restructuring on trade union act and regulation
  • High competition accelerated by New Technologies and its impact on employment

Solutions

  • Unity being the strength, focus on unified trade union movement
  • Focus on trade union education and organizing
  • Establishment of good industrial relations for productivity
  • Constitutional guarantee for trade union rights
  • Trade union representation in policy making and entities like Constitutional Assembly among others
  • Focus on training for professional knowledge and skills

Identified Sectors for Organizing

  • Multi-national banks, insurance companies and financial institutions
  • Joint venture banks, insurance companies and financial institutions
  • Private sector banks, insurance companies and financial institutions
  • Finance companies and Cooperatives
  • Share market and others

Conclusion

The role it played for restoration of democracy during Jana Andolan-2 (People Movement) despite the suppression of the then government, armed conflict and political instability is considerably praiseworthy. Additionally, its contribution to protecting rights of finance sector employees and their welfare is encouraging. To make this achievement long lasting, it is necessary to make the union more competent and transparent. On one hand, we have challenges to win the heart of our colleagues through constructive and social activities and, on the other hand; we need to get rid of being financially dependant on others and stand on our own feet. For this we need and seek our colleagues’ support and commitment. In addition to this, we need to organize those employees who are deprived of trade union rights. This way we can make FIEUN as a powerful and competent union in finance sector. To achieve this goal, we highly expect our colleagues’ full support and dedication in the days ahead as in the past.