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Bill drafted to regulate e-commerce in the interest of consumers

27th February 2021
"Bill drafted to regulate e-commerce in the interest of consumers"

The Government of Nepal is preparing to bring an act related to e-commerce and online shopping. Speaking on the Digital Dialogue Program on Sunday, Director General of the Department of Commerce, Supplies and Consumer Protection Netra Subedi said that the draft of the Act has been prepared in the Ministry and will be taken to the Parliament after approval by the Council of Ministers.

In the draft of the bill, 2077, which has been made to make arrangements for e-business to be conducted through electronic means, it is mentioned that business can be run only by registering a company and necessary action and penalty will be taken if the consumer is deceived.

This bill has been brought to manage and regulate the sale of goods and services and intellectual property using electronic means. The preamble of the bill mentions to make the process of purchase and sale of goods, services and intellectual property easy, fast, economical, reliable, quality, timely and reliable for the convenience and benefit of the consumers by making proper use of modern technology in the trade done through the use of electronic media.

Similarly, it is necessary to organize and regulate the trade done through electronic means by arranging compensation for the loss and damage to the consumers. The ministry has already released a report with an action plan and an e-commerce strategy, said Subedi. He said that the law would address company and business registration, renewal, platform, security and data security.

Due to the crisis and lockdown caused by Corona in Nepal in the last few months, people have not been able to go to the market for shopping. This problem became a fast opportunity for online shopping and e-commerce to expand their market.

Nepal's online shopping trend, which started in 2000 with Thamel and Muncha.com, is now on the rise. Despite some ups and downs in the last 20 years, Nepal still does not seem ready to compete with the global e-commerce market. In the local market, the number of people doing digital transactions and buying and selling has been increasing with the recent expansion of the internet. Stakeholders say that there is great potential in Nepal's e-commerce.

Speaking on the Digital Dialogue program on Saturday, e-commerce entrepreneurs and stakeholders stressed the need for clear and far-reaching government policy rules. Lately, there has been a complicated debate in Nepal over whether the law is trying to stop the technology or not.

Former Science Minister Ganesh Shah is of the view that innovation and technology should be managed more than the law. He said that the government should now promote innovation and e-commerce for economic development and prosperity.

The government itself has started selling and distributing various food items and other items online during the lockdown period. The government e-commerce started in Kathmandu has reached the Karnali region. Director-General of the Department of Commerce, Supplies, and Consumer Protection Netra Subedi said that it will be expanded to other areas as well.

Encouraging the efforts of the private sector, Director-General Subedi said that the government would play a coordinating role and promote digital business along with the virtual market sector. Presenting the working paper at the event, Gyanendra Khadka, CEO of Gyapu Marketplace, said that he had set up the company during the lockdown and delivered more than 30,000 orders.

According to Khadka, Nepali consumers are preparing for e-commerce in view of the large turnover in a short period of time. Stating that this is an area of ​​great potential in the world and through it, the economic and social condition of the country can be changed, he opined that the government should immediately bring necessary policy and organize and promote e-commerce.

Stating that innovation cannot be stopped by law, Khadka pointed out the possibility of expansion of Nepali e-commerce and IT companies in the world market and said that startups need support. Amrit Man Tuladhar started Muncha.com in 2000 after returning to Nepal from the United States thinking that online shopping was possible in Nepal.

Dozens of companies are now working on digital payment services. Technology is expanding, including new innovations in many areas of digital services, from ride-sharing. The participants of the program had a common view that the sector would flourish soon if the government has a far-reaching policy, investment and encouragement.

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Compiled by : Debashish S Neupane Debashish S Neupane

Sastodeal.com the first e-commerce company in Nepal to give employees’ ESOP

26th February 2021
"Amun Thapa, Founder & CEO of the company said The management couldn’t be happier to introduce ESOP and to create ways to give back to our employees.”"

Sastodeal.com becomes the first e-commerce company in Nepal to give employees’ stock option. In ‘All hands meeting’ event, the company announced the news that all employees who have been with the company for at least 3 years will be eligible for ESOP (employee stock ownership plan) starting this fiscal year. The criteria for an employee to vest ESOP is based on the years spent at the company and certain key business indicators associated to the employees’ performance.

Anup Shakya, Finance Controller at Sastodeal estimates that the total value for ESOP in the next 2 years will be worth at least Rs.10 Crore.

Amun Thapa, Founder & CEO of the company said, “We are lucky to have a very supportive board who understands the need to retain and motivate employees. The median age at Sastodeal is 23 years which means that almost everyone at the company is giving the best of their years for the company. The management couldn’t be happier to introduce ESOP and to create ways to give back to our employees.”

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Compiled by : Biplav Gachhadar Biplav Gachhadar

Official guidelines for Tootle, Pathao service still awaited | Reviews Nepal

25th February 2021
"According to the Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport, discussions are underway at the Ministry to incorporate the Tootle and Pathao services in a bill relating to transport management."

Official guidelines for the operation of the transport services run by the private sector are yet to be issued in Nepal. The users of Tootle and Pathao's ride-sharing service in the Kathmandu Valley of Nepal are on the rise while there is no rule to look after transport services being provided by using private number plate vehicles (two-wheelers).

According to the Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport, discussions are underway at the Ministry to incorporate the Tootle and Pathao services in a bill relating to transport management presented earlier by the Department of Transport Management. As said by Ministry Spokesperson, no substantive decision to this regard has been made yet. The Transport Management Act-2048 BS has prohibited private vehicles from carrying passengers. Though the government of Nepal earlier had decided to stop these services, it moved back from its decision owing to growing public concerns. Prime Minister KP Sharma had taken intervention not to implement the decision. The Department three months ago had issued a notice, asking the service providers to halt the services. Minister for Physical Infrastructure and Transport, Basanta Kumar Nembang had in the past directed the Department to come up work procedures/guidelines to operate the services.

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Compiled by : Debashish S Neupane Debashish S Neupane