A year of celebrations

As Bhutan was just finishing celebrating the 60th Birth Anniversary year of The Great Fourth in 2015 the beginning of 2016 had more celebrations in store with the Birth of His Royal Highness the Gyalsey on 5th February 2016.

The birth was an auspicious one coinciding with the birth year of Guru Rinpoche and the 400th year of the arrival of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal to Bhutan.

However, beyond the auspicious moment and celebrations, the year 2016 is significant in ensuring the continuity of the Wangchuck Dynasty and by extension stability, unity and peace in Bhutan.

The year is also significant in another important celebration of His Majesty The King completing 10 years of a significant and far reaching Reign.

In all of the above it was a deeply reassuring year for Bhutan in that its main and vital institution of the Monarchy will continue to provide strong and inspiration leadership for many decades to come.

On the economic front, there was notable progress and developments with Bhutan achieving a stable Rupee and Ngultrum parity and the rupee crisis being a bad dream of the past. India’s latest demonetization drive has thrown up some temporary bumps but things will stabilize with a record INR 30 bn reserve.

Staying on the economic front another major achievement was the reduction of bank loan interest rates which is a major opportunity combined with the earlier removal of credit restrictions. A very welcome and progressive fiscal move was the government lifting PIT off fixed deposits.

After the tough years of 2012 and 2013, Bhutan is firmly on the path to economic stability.

On the governance front, the government, even in its third year has avoided making any major mistakes or getting entangled in any controversial scams and issues.

With the end of 2016 and the start of 2017, the government will have around a year and a half left in power. This will mean that there will be a rush to the finish line to finish major projects and also carry out some new ones.

The political temperatures will also start increasing from 2017 onwards as political parties across the board will gear up for a very interesting 2018.

However, apart from parties other democratic institutions, democratic culture and maturity are also evolving indicating the deepening of democracy in Bhutan.

All in all, Bhutan has had a very good and auspicious year, the impact of which will be seen in the coming years and decades.

Every time you tear a leaf off a calendar, you present a new place for new ideas and progress.
 Charles Kettering

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