Planned development in Nepal began in 1956. From the beginning the main focus of national development policies has been on the development and expansion of basic physical infrastructure and social services. Around 70 per cent of the development budget funded under external aid programmes was invested in these core areas. Development partners have played a key role in helping plan policy and development goals, which tend to follow prevailing global paradigms and practices. Keeping with the global trends, the development paradigm prioritised growth over redistribution. It assumed that growth would subsequently trickle down to transform the lives of the downtrodden.