…𝒑𝒓𝒊𝒗𝒂𝒕𝒆 𝒔𝒆𝒄𝒕𝒐𝒓 𝒈𝒓𝒐𝒘𝒕𝒉 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝒇𝒐𝒓𝒆𝒊𝒈𝒏 𝒊𝒏𝒗𝒆𝒔𝒕𝒎𝒆𝒏𝒕 𝒕𝒂𝒌𝒆 𝒄𝒆𝒏𝒕𝒆𝒓 𝒔𝒕𝒂𝒈𝒆 𝒊𝒏 𝑩𝒉𝒖𝒕𝒂𝒏’𝒔 𝒗𝒊𝒔𝒊𝒐𝒏 𝒇𝒐𝒓 𝒆𝒄𝒐𝒏𝒐𝒎𝒊𝒄 𝒑𝒓𝒐𝒔𝒑𝒆𝒓𝒊𝒕𝒚
Prime Minister Dr. Lotay Tshering presented the State of the Nation Report to Parliament on October 13, unveiling an ambitious roadmap for the future. According to the report, the 13th Five-Year Plan will primarily focus on boosting the private sector, signaling a strategic shift in Bhutan’s economic landscape.
The government aims to significantly increase private sector investment, aiming to raise it from the current 40% to over 50% by 2029, and further to 60% by 2034. Efforts will be made to elevate the manufacturing sector’s contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) from 6% in 2021 to an impressive 15% by 2029.
To facilitate the private sector, substantial progress has been made in negotiating a preferential trade agreement between Bhutan and Nepal, improving market access and connectivity. Initiatives are also underway to initiate talks with Thailand for a similar trade agreement. Bhutan is exploring trade agreements with countries like Singapore, Vietnam, South Korea, and Malaysia to foster economic partnerships.
The government is set to attract more Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) with a target of increasing the current figure of 43 billion ngultrum to 100 billion ngultrum by 2029. The report outlines plans to review the existing FDI policy and relevant regulations to make Bhutan an even more attractive investment destination.
Addressing the trade deficit issue, the government is working to reduce it to 20% of the GDP by 2029, demonstrating a commitment to achieving economic balance.
The report highlights key programs for private sector growth, including the implementation of an integrated business licensing system that serves as a single window for business licenses. The government will actively pursue accession to the World Trade Organisation and focus on market diversification through the Brand Bhutan initiative, targeting countries in the European Union, the United States of America, and Japan.
Prime Minister Dr. Lotay Tshering affirmed that several of these programs are already in progress. The establishment of the GovBiz Service Centre in August marked a significant milestone, functioning as a comprehensive, one-stop-shop platform for all business-related services to the public. These initiatives serve as the initial steps toward realizing the objectives outlined in the 13th Five-Year Plan, accelerating the growth of business-related services in the country.