'Swiss Films on Wheels' Initiated To Strengthen Ties Between Bhutan And Switzerland


The friendship bus ‘Swiss Films on Wheels’, is expected to travel across 17 places in the country.

(Source: Facebook/Embassy of Switzerland to India and Bhutan)


By Choki Wangmo Kuensel

To further strengthen the political, economic, and cultural ties between Switzerland and Bhutan, the 728th Swiss National day was observed in Thimphu on 1 Aug.

The day was marked with the launch of the friendship bus ‘Swiss Films on Wheels’, which is expected to travel across 17 places in the country.

‘Swiss Films on Wheels’ uses film as a medium to cut across cultural borders and to bring the two countries together.


Photo: Facebook/Embassy of Switzerland to India and Bhutan


Yesterday, Heidi was screened in the conference Hall of the Royal University of Bhutan. The film will be screened within the next three weeks, with the aim of spreading the message of friendship.

The Ambassador of Switzerland to India and Bhutan, the Honorary Consul of Switzerland, dignitaries from the government and about 250 school children attended the event.

Why was the film ‘Heidi’ chosen?

The Ambassador, Andrea Baum (PhD) said that the story of Heidi had become part of the Swiss cultural heritage.

“The movie shows an idealised version of Switzerland. It also illustrates the hard side of life. It is about growing up, family, the opposition between rural and urban lives, and rebellion of a free spirit against conservative norms.”

According to Madhura Phatak, the Cultural Programme officer with the Embassy of Switzerland in India, Heidi is a symbol of friendship. It is a story of a young 8-year-old girl who travels from the Swiss Alps to Frankfurt to be a friend with a sick girl called Kalra.


How "Swiss Films on Wheels" work in Uttarakhand, India.

Source: Facebook/Embassy of Switzerland to India and Bhutan


The story is about the magic of friendship between Heidi and Karla. The film will inspire friendship, respect and trust among communities, societies and across cultures.

“I cannot imagine a better country to share this movie than Bhutan,” said the Ambassador, Andrea Baum. 

The film will be screened in collaboration with local schools, NGOs and other partners in the country. 


Photo: Facebook/Embassy of Switzerland to India and Bhutan


In an effort to encourage students to better appreciate ‘Heidi’, after each film screening, they can participate in a photo contest with the standee of characters in the film and win prizes.

Close ties between Bhutan and Switzerland

The close ties of Bhutan and Switzerland began with the friendship between His Majesty the Third King and a Swiss businessman, Fritz von Schulthess, who initiated a series of developmental activities in the country.

Bhutan and Switzerland established formal diplomatic relations in 1985. Since then, under various Swiss projects, such as the Swiss Red Cross, Helvatas, and Swiss Development Cooperation, several developmental projects were carried out in Bhutan.

Last year, Switzerland established an Honorary Consulate in Thimphu with the intention to further strengthen political, economic and cultural ties.

“Swiss Films on Wheels” is another step towards fulfilling this commitment.


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



Related Posts

Swiss Business Delegates Visited Bhutan To Explore Business...

“Switzerland has a strong industrial base that equally matches the geographical conditions of Bhutan,” said Phub Zam.

Jun 14, 2019 17:25

Bhutan Presented 3rd National Report To UN Human Rights Council...

Bhutan has made significant progress since the country presented its second Universal Periodic Review in 2014.

May 11, 2019 19:20

Savour a Bit of Switzerland in Bhutan

The restaurant owners are a Swiss-Bhutanese couple who hail from Bumthang, where their family owns the Swiss Guest...

Dec 01, 2017 08:29

Austria-Bhutan Society Helps Build Schools In Remote Villages Of...

The ABS also provides scholarships, sports coaches and exchange of medical doctors.

Jun 10, 2019 19:38

Austria Commits 8.3m Euros To Facilitate Bhutan’s Transition From...

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

Feb 25, 2019 18:40

Austrian Delegation Seek Investment Opportunities In Bhutan And...

According to the Austrian delegates, eight companies from diverse sectors such as energy, engineering, tourism and...

Dec 06, 2018 12:42



Co-Funded By The EU, [email protected] Project Launched To Provide High Speed Internet For Bhutan’s Research And Education Communities

A high-speed network called DrukREN for research and education communities in Bhutan was also launched.

Aug 21, 2019 09:58

Find Innovative Solutions For Every Challenge: Prime Minister Modi To Bhutan’s Youth

Prime Minister Modi said that he ‘sees dynamism and felt energised’ while meeting with the future of Bhutan.

Aug 18, 2019 23:58


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


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


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


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


Finding One’s Voice: Rapping In The Kingdom Of Bhutan

The lack of support for rappers stems from the general misconception that most people have about rap.

Aug 10, 2019 23:38

First Bhutan-Bollywood Film Collaboration - Rolong: Make the Dead Walk In The Making

The film is expected to hit the theatres by the middle of 2020.

Aug 04, 2019 23:58

Subscribe to our newsletter

Never miss out on new happenings and news stories!