Bhutan’s Ministry of Information and Communication Set To Boost Film Industry And Other Sectors In 12th Plan
Nu 340.555 million will be spent on: satellite, a film studio, cinemas, air and road transport, according to the draft of the 12th Plan.
By Pema Seldon | The Bhutanese
The revised capital budget allocation for Bhutan’s Ministry of Information and Communication (MoIC) during the 12th Five Year Plan (FYP) is Nu 3,490 million.
Nu 340.555 million will be spent in the fiscal year June 2018 to July 2019 where the main priorities will be on: satellite, a film studio, cinemas, air and road transport, according to the draft of the 12th Plan prepared by the MoIC.
An official from the Policy and Planning Division (PPD) under the MoIC said that in 2019, the ministry will be focusing on five major projects such as the construction of a space building, film studio, cinema halls in five dzongkhags, replacement of the internal combustion engine vehicles with electric vehicles as well as an air service agreement with the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Boosting the film industry in Bhutan
The official also added that in order to promote the art of Bhutanese film-making, Nu 80 million will be allotted for the construction of a film studio. In the absence of a proper film studio, the film industry has been confronted with so many challenges even though Bhutan’s film industry boomed within a short period of time.
Luger Cinema in Thimphu, Bhutan.
Photo: Flickr/Peter Ward
The MoIC official said, “Nu 25 million has been allocated for the construction of cinema halls in five dzongkhags like Samdrup Jongkhar, Gelephu, Wangdue, Tsirang and Trashigang.”
Taking a new approach to reduce carbon emission
In addition, the capital budget apportioned for the installation of 23 quick charging stations is Nu 69 million. The ministry, in collaboration with the Global Environment Facility (GEF) under the United Nation Development Programme (UNDP) will install 23 quick charging stations in towns such as Thimphu, Paro, Punakha, Chukha, Haa and Wangdue Phodrang.
The ministry will also work on the replacement of 300 internal combustion engine taxis with electric vehicles along with the installation of 23 quick charging stations over a period of three years.
Photo: Tshering Tobgay
“The project is of great national significance, with its direct relevance to reducing emission from the transport sector, thereby strengthening our environmental conservation efforts in Bhutan,” the official said.
Under Bhutan’s Civil Aviation Authority (BCAA), the ministry is also exploring viable options for aviation collaboration with the UAE. The ministry has prepared an air service agreement and submitted it to the government. This shall be discussed during the first parliament session.
Apart from these five major projects, the ministry will also expand the Yonphula Domestic Airport in Trashigang. It will also construct a new terminal building in Bumthang Airport as well as security quarters in Gelephu Airport. All these plans are aimed at promoting reliable and safe public transportation.
This article first appeared in The Bhutanese and has been edited for the Daily Bhutan.