UNDP Presents His Majesty The King Of Bhutan A Special Award Of Recognition


His Majesty the King is being recognised for three major human development achievements in Bhutan.

His Majesty the King receiving a special award from UNDP Administrator and UN Under-Secretary-General, Mr Achim Steiner. (Source: UNDP)


By Staff Reporter | Daily Bhutan

The UN Development Programme (UNDP) on March 13 presented a Special Recognition Award to His Majesty King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck, of Bhutan, for his leadership in advancing human development and the wellbeing of Bhutanese people.

UNDP Administrator and UN Under-Secretary-General, Achim Steiner, who is in the country as co-chair of the 14th Round Table Meeting, presented the award. 

"Bhutan's success demonstrates that ambitious sustainable development policies coupled with committed and enlightened leadership can produce remarkable results and transform people's lives," said Achim Steiner, UNDP Administrator.

"This progress and stability in Bhutan are a testament to the vision and leadership of His Majesty the King and the Royal Government."

His Majesty the King is being recognised for three major human development achievements in Bhutan:

His Majesty has championed Gross National Happiness (GNH) as a holistic development paradigm; his leadership on the environment and climate action has ensured that Bhutan is the only carbon-neutral country in the world; and His Majesty’s guidance, which ensured a smooth transition of the system of governance and strong democratic foundations to be established in Bhutan. This has been evident from the significant and tangible development results reflected in the new National Human Development Report of ten years of democracy in the country, which was launched yesterday.

National Human Development Report

The fourth National Human Development Report (NHDR) was released on March 12 and was titled 'Ten years of democracy in Bhutan', highlighting development results during the 10 years of democracy in the country.

Prime Minister Dr Lotay Tshering and UNDP Administrator and UN Under-Secretary-General Achim Steiner released the report at the Parliament Courtyard on Tuesday, reported Kuensel.

The report has made 20 recommendations. Among these recommendations include updating the Bhutan’s Vision 2020 for a longer term vision, a stronger focus on training media professionals, revising rural taxes, waiving off the university degree qualification requirement for politicians, stronger monitoring of political party expenditure and source of funding, removing the voting ban on lay monks and nuns, and lifting the restriction on gatherings during elections, among others.

Speaker of the National Assembly, Wangchuck Namgyel said: "The report reflects the resonance between the Gross National Happiness (GNH) and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as broad visions of human progress and development.

"Just as the SDGs echo the pledge to 'leave no one behind', the GNH requires us to reach every section of our population by strengthening the process of decentralisation."

The report states that democracy has made Bhutanese more conscious of their fundamental rights as well as their duties as citizens.

Mr Steiner said: "This report, by measuring people’s satisfaction with the government and freedom of expression, based on the philosophy of Gross National Happiness, provides a robust picture of human development in Bhutan."

Dialogue in Bhutan on rethinking development

During his visit here, Mr Steiner also spoke on March 13 at the 4th Royal Institute for Governance and Strategic Studies (RIGSS) Dialogue held at the Royal University of Bhutan, on the theme "Rethinking Development With UNDP", which was broadcast live on social media channels. 

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