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Economic Success of Tibetan Administration On Record

[WTN-L World Tibet Network News. Published by The Canada Tibet Committee. Issue ID: 2006/03/17; March 17, 2006.]

Dharamshala, 17 March (TibetNet) - An offi cial review report released here yesterday at the opening of the final session of the 13th Assembly of the Tibetan People's Deputies gave a clean bill of economic health to the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA).

Economic Review: 2005-06, presented by Kalon Lobsang Nyandak Zayul is an objective review of the state of CTA's finances during the administration of Kalon Tripa Prof. Samdhong Rinpoche, since September 2001.

As soon as Prof. Samdhong Rinpoche assumed the office of Kalon Tripa, he declared an outline of his economic policies: privatisation of business units owned by the CTA, repayment of public debts, investment of the endowment fund in risk-free deposits, earning enough interest to cover the running expenses of the CTA, and streamlining the system of collection of the voluntary contributions through Green Book.

"As of now, all of those promises have been met successfully." Kalon Zayul said.

In a bid to us her in more transparency in the exile Tibetan governance, the incumbent Kashag introduced the convention of submitting a comprehensive balance sheet, including up-to-date information on the various financial policies and their implementation, to the Assembly every year since 2002.

In accordance with the principles and financial policy adopted by the Kashag, the 64-page report says, all 34 business enterprises owned by the CTA were successfully privatized or liquidated in close consultation with all the stakeholders, including managers and workers. Only about 10 percent of the massive public debts of CTA that remains to be cleared will be repaid by the end of this month. Thus, now there is no scope left for heavy losses, insolvency or liquidation of the business units.

Austerity measures including some drastic cutbacks in the (unnecessary) administrative expenses of the various head offices have been particularly successful in economizing funds of the CTA. The total figures of the recurring expenses in 2001 and 2005 show a decrease by nearly 20 percent. In some account heads like telephone and fax, expenses have dropped by almost 50%, with only a marginal or no increase in other account heads like water and electricity during the past five years.

More than half of the total expenditure outlay for 2001-05 are related to welfare services, including education, health care, relief and rehabilitation, to a whole lot of diverse groups of elderly people, children with special needs, diseased and poor people, unemployed youth, former Tibetan prisoners of conscience, needy people from the ecclesiastical communities, children of poor families, etc.

To attain some degree of financial latitude for the CTA, a sizeable corpus fund which will generate adequate revenues for its yearly budget was also created. Since 2001, the fund has risen by over 200 percent, and considerably reduced the financial dependency o f the CTA.

In its conclusion, the report acknowledges that the successful execution of all various political and administrative initiatives of the Kashag in the manner worked out in the original plan has come to pass largely because of the prompt and active support of the 13th Assembly in granting its approval, especially with respect to the privatisation of the business units owned by the CTA.

"It is hoped that in the near future this administration will realise some degree of financial security," the report adds. "Since last year, the Finance Department has successfully undertaken numerous initiatives to boost Tibetan business ventures. With the close attention and active participation of the Tibetan exiles, we believe we will boost private businesses and thereby, raise the living standards of the Tibetan exiles."

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