Austria Commits 8.3m Euros To Facilitate Bhutan’s Transition From Its Least Developed Countries Status By 2023

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Austria's development assistance to Bhutan started with training for the tourism sector in the late 1970s.

(Source: Kuensel)

 

By Staff reporter | Kuensel

Austria has committed 8.3 million euros to help Bhutan graduate from its least developed countries status by the end of the 12th Five Year Plan.

The Gross National Happiness Commission Secretary, Thinley Namgyel and the Ambassador of Austria to Bhutan based in New Delhi, Brigitte Oeppinger-Walchshofer signed the letter of exchange for the Bhutan Country Strategy 2019-2023 on February 23.

The signing took place in the presence of two foreign ministers, Dr Tandin Dorji and Karin Kneissl (PhD).

 

Photo: BBS

 

The Austrian minister for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs, Karin Kneissl was on a two-day visit to Bhutan, accompanied by senior officials from the Austrian government.

More about the Bhutan Country Strategy 2019-2023

The Bhutan Country Strategy 2019-2023 is the result of a consultative and participative process passed on Bhutan’s development policies, taking into consideration the achievements of Bhutan on its way to development.

The strategy supports Bhutan during the transition period until its graduation from the least developed countries status, foreseen to be at the end of 2023.

It also stipulates the phasing out of Austrian Development Cooperation from Bhutan by 2023, a foreign ministry press release states.

History of how Austria has been involved in Bhutan’s development

Austria's development assistance to Bhutan started with training for the tourism sector in the late 1970s.

 

The exotic and colourful tschechus (festivals) in Bhutan are major tourist attractions.

Photo: Druk Asia

 

An agreement on technical cooperation was formally signed on May 10, 1989 to strengthen technical cooperation between Austria and Bhutan.

Austria has been a development partner to Bhutan over the past three decades in the priority areas of energy, culture, tourism, RNR and in recent years, governance as well.

Prime Minister Dr Lotay Tshering also met with the Foreign Minister of Austria, Dr Kneissl. He was on a two-day visit to Bhutan, accompanied by senior officials from the Austrian government.

 

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

 


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