Letters to the Editor

Thimphu Tech Park turns into a White Elephant

The 8 million dollar ADB or WB loan has been wasted because of policies made under hallucination. This big empty building is a tremendous loss for our country with scarce resources. I wonder whether those leaders who had decided to build a castle in the air feel any pinch for such a misguided investment. There are more of such investments on the way. You don’t have to be a scientist to understand the realities of our country. When we do not have productive IT people, how on earth can we have mega IT hub? Ironically, our so-called IT graduates can’t even read and write the basics of programming language.

Look, we can’t even advise and guide our future generation into acquiring right skills and knowledge. When we do not have an education system equivalent to the ones in the developed countries, how on earth can we convince foreign students to leave the best education in exchange for our second-rated one? Therefore, the education hub is another big castle in the air. Please, I would request this paper to continue exposing such flaws. Let us stop the education city project, GNH centre in Bumthang and so on that is not necessary for a country which needs other vital investments.


Something for the Education City project to ponder, perhaps?


TTPL can never be a success in Bhutan. Try to see the IT Parks in India and how they are managed and look at the difference of attitude there and here, right from the employees to the management. Giants like Wipro and Infosys coming and setting up their office in Bhutan will remain a dream for ever.

I would rather suggest that the TTPL should hire out or lease the space to DHI and DGPC who are both housed in private buildings and paying millions in rent monthly. In fact both DHI & DGPC are planning to have their corporate office built with huge expenditure soon. DGPC has recently even given a published advertisement to hire out more space for their office, to the tune of more than 50000sft. TTPL should bid for this. And as reported by one of the newspapers, since both DGPC and DHI are planning to construct office based on green technology, their purpose is solved since IT Park is a green building with LEED Platinum Certification. TTPL shall surely sustain and start to earn too.


We copy others successes without doing proper research in our local environment and the related ecosystems. The Tech Park is such an outcome where we looked at similar successes in India and neighboring countries. The BPO industry was the happening thing in late 80s, 90s and early part of century in India but it is slowing down. We looked at the success of 90s and want to replicate in 2010 onwards, we have missed the bus and created a white elephant. It is a time displaced dream and effort. The IT hubs in India sustain not only because of foreign investments and businesses but also there is a strong local demand from businesses with the rise of Indian economy. IT Hub in Bhutan is fully targeted at foreign countries as we lack any sizeable local demand. The shrinking global economy and rise of more value for money investment in some Asian developing countries, especially Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos compounds our problem. Soon Myanmar will be the next global destination of investment. We in Bhutan have developed our own Unique Selling Points (USP) and are very content with them and expect the investors to see our way. But investors are real business tycoons who do thorough research before putting their money in any country. Our USPs looks good to us but actually have no financial charms to investors. Bhutan is a good holiday destination but not for businesses. We are ranked very low in the business list. As mentioned, the Education City will also be another failure. It may be wiser to lose few hundred millions than a few billions. Let us relook at the reality of the Education City.

Drukpa Kinley

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