The government has fixed 18 ministries, including the Office of Prime Minister and Council of Ministers (OPMCM), at the central level, under the new federal setup.
A cabinet meeting held at the prime minister's official residence at Baluwatar amended the regulations on performance appraisal for the government and fixed the number of ministries including the OPMCM at 18. Prior to the decision, there were 31 ministries, including OPMCM.
The cabinet decision comes two days after leaders of the ruling left alliance--CPN-UML and CPN (Maoist Center)--agreed to bring down the number of ministries to 18 at the federal level and a day after they agreed to divide the ministerial portfolios on a 60:40 ratio.
Besides the OPMCM, the proposed 17 ministries are the ministries of finance and planning; foreign affairs; defense; physical infrastructure and transport; health and population; federal affairs and general administration; information and communications; law, justice and parliamentary affairs; culture, tourism and civil aviation; education and sports; home affairs; forest and environment; water resources and energy; industry, commerce and supplies; labor, employment, women and children; urban development, drinking water and sanitation; and agriculture, cooperatives and land management.
The decision will come into effect after the government endorses the proposal on the jurisdictions of the 17 ministries, according to OPMCM officials.