Over the last few decades, socio-economic progress has greatly reduced the number of people below poverty line, increase in GDP per capita and improvement in living standard. According to the World Bank, Bhutan has managed an annual average economic growth of over 7% in the past decade. Further, according to the Asian Development Bank, Bhutan is one of the emerging economies in the region.
As Bhutan aspires to make its economy more resilient and play an active role in the global economy, the Royal Government has undertaken a number of economic expansion and diversification initiatives. One such initiative is a concerted effort by the Royal Government to attract Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) by liberalizing the FDI regime, reforming its economic policy and creating a conducive investment climate. FDI began in as early as 2002 with the adoption of the FDI Policy. The policy and regulations have also been revised in 2010 and 2019 to align with the changing needs and conditions.
Bhutan is strategically located in a region surrounded by emerging economies with vast market opportunities. Particularly, India is Bhutan’s major trading partner constituting over 80 percent of Bhutan’s external trade. Bhutan and India have a free trade agreement on Trade in Goods.
Bhutan is a member of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation and enjoys free trade with member countries under the South Asian Free Trade Area. Bhutan is also a member of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation which provides access to a huge market of over 1.73 billion people in the region.
Bhutan has enjoyed political stability and peace for over a century. The Global Peace Index ranks Bhutan as the most peaceful country in the region. According to Transparency International’s Corruption Perception Index (2020), Bhutan is ranked 24th least corrupt country in the world and 6th in Asia.
Bhutan’s development is guided by the philosophy of Gross National Happiness that seeks to maximize the happiness of its people. This development model places equal importance to sustainable socio-economic development, promotion and preservation of culture, conservation of environment and good governance.
Hydropower is one of the major sources of national revenue and Bhutan is on track to harness 10,000 MWs of this clean green energy which is also competitively priced.
Thanks to free public education, Bhutan offers an educated workforce with good command of the English language since the medium of instruction is English in schools and tertiary institutes.
Bhutan offers abundant investment opportunities in various sectors such as manufacturing sector (agro/forest/water-based) and service sector (education, health, hotel and resort, ICT, construction, infrastructure facilities, etc).
Foreign investors are provided with a host of incentives while investing in Bhutan, which include the following:
- Tax Holiday of 5 to 10 years depending on the sector.
- Sales Tax and Customs Duty exemption on import of Plant and Machinery, raw materials & primary packaging materials.
- 10 years tax exemption on convertible currency earnings from manufacturing and IT/ITES services.
- Tax rebate of 15% on environmental up-gradation.
- Reinvestment allowance.
Further, investors are ensured business predictability and maximum value for their money through the impact created by contributing to achieving Sustainable Development Goals.
We welcome you to invest in Bhutan.
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