Asian Development Bank: Bhutan Among Fastest Growing Economies In Asia

Email

In 2018, Bhutan’s GDP is projected to grow by 7.1 percent, the second highest growth after India (7.3 percent).

The exotic beauty of Bhutan. (Source: Tourism Council of Bhutan)

 

By Tshering Dorji | Kuensel

With an economic growth rate of 7.5 percent in 2017, Bhutan is the fastest growing economy in the developing Asian region, according to the Asian Development Bank (ADB).

The bank’s Asian Development Outlook 2018 states that the economic forecast sees continued, strong and stable growth in Bhutan. However, the delayed completion of two large hydropower plants has postponed a sharp upturn that was forecast earlier.

 

Source: Tourism Council of Bhutan

 

This means that the country is likely to experience a similar growth projection for the next two years. In 2018, the country’s GDP is projected to grow by 7.1 percent, the second highest growth after India (7.3 percent).

The Indian economy is expected be the fastest growing economy in 2019 with a projected 7.6 percent followed by Bhutan with 7.4 percent.

Unemployment of youth is an issue of concern in Bhutan

However, ADB observed that despite sustained economic progress, youth unemployment remains an issue of concern.

“Although Bhutan has enjoyed remarkable economic progress, growth has not brought commensurate job creation for new entrants into the labour force,” the report stated.

Besides the clichéd mismatch between skills and job demand and preference for office jobs over manual labour, there is still limited absorption capacity in the job market in the public sector.

Family support granted to young people while they are unemployed and the lack of motivation to pursue financial independence are cited as factors contributing to youth unemployment.

Cottage and small industries help to create employment for youth

On a brighter note, cottage and small industries (CSIs) employ on average almost five workers per enterprise. In 2017, such enterprises employed 92,322 workers, or over 26 percent of the labour force. The government has identified the CSI sector a potential area for generating youth employment opportunities.

Growth forecast for other sectors in Bhutan

Despite challenges, the service sector is expected to be the main driver of the economy as wholesale and retail businesses and tourism continue to expand.

The growth in the industrial sector is forecast to be moderate because the final stages of construction will slow down at the two large hydropower plants, Punatsangchhu I and II.

Moreover, industry growth will strengthen slightly in 2019 because of the expected commissioning of the Mangdechhu Hydropower Plant in September 2018, which will bolster electricity production and exports.

Agriculture, which is relatively a small sector, is expected to grow faster in 2018 than last year based on the assumption of normal weather and government efforts to introduce new crops.

The improvement in productivity and the channelling of additional credit to agriculture are part of the government’s agenda for financial inclusion, the ADB report states.

In addition, various reforms that are being undertaken to foster CSI start-ups through improved access to finance, programmes and institutions are also expected to bear results in the coming years.

 

This article first appeared in Kuensel and has been edited for the Daily Bhutan.


Related Posts

Bhutan To Graduate From Being A Least Developed Country

Secretary of Gross National Happiness Commission spoke to thethirdpole.net about what this milestone means for Bhutan.

May 08, 2018 09:44

Bhutan to Graduate from Least Developed Countries Group by 2022

Bhutan has stable political, economic and social settings that could attract a lot of Foreign Direct Investments.

Nov 17, 2017 09:01

Applying the Concept of GNH on Social Enterprises

The essence of a social entrepreneur is what they can do and how they can balance the social and the commercial aspects...

Nov 14, 2017 07:47

Tourism Growth Boosts Handicrafts Business

“We can see the happiness in the colours and it’s very special. I think it’s essential that westerners come over,...

Nov 01, 2017 07:10

Bhutan Government Waives Off USD 65 a Day for Tourists

The move is expected to promote tourism in the eastern part of the country

Dec 11, 2017 09:33

​Bhutan is the 3rd Fastest Growing Economy in 2017

Lyonchhen said that if one went by The Economist ‘World in numbers’ figures, then Bhutan is predicted to be the fastest...

Jan 03, 2018 11:36

Latest

News

Bhutan Moves Closer To Becoming 100% Organic With National Organic Flagship Programme

The flagship programme’s Annual Performance Agreement was signed between Prime Minister Dr Lotay Tshering and the Agriculture and Forests...

Aug 24, 2019 22:38

Training Of Trainers On ‘Search Inside Yourself’ To Build Mindfulness Among Civil Servants In Bhutan

The Royal Civil Service Commission and the Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute (USA) organised the training.

Aug 23, 2019 23:58

Features

Bhutan Women Parliamentary Caucus Launched To Promote Gender Equality

It is expected to address the need for women role models at leadership and decision-making levels in Bhutan.

Aug 20, 2019 17:08

Fulfilling His Majesty The King’s Vision, Digital Drukyul Is Set To Improve Public Service Delivery And Empower Citizens Digitally

Digital Drukyul will help create a digital ecosystem for citizens which is unencumbered by bureaucratic red tape.

Aug 19, 2019 15:28

Sports

Two Young Bhutanese Swimmers Competed In 18th FINA World Championship

The duo are proud to represent Bhutan and compete on a worldwide stage for the first time.

Jul 28, 2019 21:32

Bhutan’s Dragon Boys Starts FIFA World Cup Qualifiers With A 1-0 Win Over Guam

Midfielder, Tshering Dorji’s 35th minute strike was enough to make Bhutan win the first leg of the first round of the 2022 World Cup and...

Jun 08, 2019 22:18

Business

Southeast Asian Company Invests Over US$100,000 In Bhutanese Start-up Drukfood

The investment includes a mix of cash and investment-in-kind.

Aug 15, 2019 14:26

Bhutan’s First Crowdfunding Platform Gaining Traction, Opens Doors For Entrepreneurs To Raise Funds

So far, three promoters - Bhutan Alternatives, Freelancer Bhutan and Himalayan food have registered with the Bhutan crowdfunding platform.

Aug 05, 2019 22:10

Travel

7 Facts You Never Knew About Flying Into Bhutan

Druk Asia interviewed Namgyal Wangchuk, Senior First Officer with Drukair to find out what it's like to fly into Paro International Airport.

Aug 07, 2019 23:18

Bhutan Has Great Potential To Be A Top Eco-Tourism Spot: Albert Teo

Despite Bhutan being home to a wide array of flora and fauna, it is still not a top ecotourism destination.

Jul 19, 2019 23:58

Lifestyle

Many Lives, Many Stories - 10th Edition of Bhutan’s Mountain Echoes Literary Festival Underway

About 80 speakers and performers came from different parts of the world with different stories to narrate.

Aug 25, 2019 22:42

Bali-Bhutan Art Exhibition Hosted By VAST Bhutan To Enhance Friendship And Exchange Of Ideas

Founded in 1998, VAST Bhutan has been promoting and facilitating art exchange programmes with various nationalities.

Aug 22, 2019 14:28

Subscribe to our newsletter

Never miss out on new happenings and news stories!