Statistical information Bhutan 1990Bhutan

Map of Bhutan | Geography | People | Government | Economy | Energy | Communication
Military | Transportation | Transnational Issues | Year:  | More stats

Bhutan in the World
Bhutan in the World


Bhutan - Introduction 1990
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Background: Under British influence a monarchy was set up in 1907; three years later a treaty was signed whereby the country became a British protectorate. Independence was attained in 1949 with India subsequently guiding foreign relations and supplying aid.

Bhutan - Geography 1990
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Geographic coordinates

Map reference


Land boundaries: 1,075 km total; China 470 km, India 605 km

Coastline: none--landlocked

Maritime claims: none--landlocked

Climate: varies; tropical in southern plains; cool winters and hot summers in central valleys; severe winters and cool summers in Himalayas

Terrain: mostly mountainous with some fertile valleys and savanna


Natural resources: timber, hydropower, gypsum, calcium carbide
Land use

Land use: 2% arable land; NEGL% permanent crops; 5% meadows and pastures; 70% forest and woodland; 23% other

Irrigated land

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards

Note: landlocked; strategic location between China and India; controls several key Himalayan mountain passes

Bhutan - People 1990
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Population: 1,565,969 (July 1990), growth rate 2.0% (1990)

Nationality: noun--Bhutanese (sing., pl.; adjective--Bhutanese

Ethnic groups: 60% Bhote, 25% ethnic Nepalese, 15% indigenous or migrant tribes

Languages: Bhotes speak various Tibetan dialects--most widely spoken dialect is Dzongkha (official; Nepalese speak various Nepalese dialects

Religions: 75% Lamaistic Buddhism, 25% Indian- and Nepalese-influenced Hinduism

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate

Birth rate: 37 births/1000 population (1990)

Death rate: 17 deaths/1000 population (1990)

Net migration rate: 0 migrants/1000 population (1990)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: violent storms coming down from the Himalayas were the source of the country name which translates as Land of the Thunder Dragon

Air pollutants

Sex ratio

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate: 137 deaths/1000 live births (1990)

Life expectancy at birth: 50 years male, 48 years female (1990)

Total fertility rate: 5.0 children born/woman (1990)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access


Major infectious diseases

Obesity adult prevalence rate

Alcohol consumption

Tobacco use

Children under the age of 5 years underweight

Education expenditures

Literacy: 5%

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Bhutan - Government 1990
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Country name: conventional long form: Kingdom of Bhutan

Government type: monarchy; special treaty relationship with India

Capital: Thimphu

Administrative divisions: 3 regions and 1 division*; Central Bhutan, Eastern Bhutan, Southern Bhutan*, Western Bhutan; note--there may now be 18 districts (dzong, singular and plural) named Bumthang, Chhukha, Chirang, Daga, Geylegphug, Ha, Lhuntshi, Mongar, Paro, Pemagatsel, Punakha, Samchi, Samdrup Jongkhar, Shemgang, Tashigang, Thimphu, Tongsa, Wangdiphodrang

Dependent areas

Independence: 8 August 1949 (from India)

National holiday: National Day (Ugyen Wangchuck became first hereditary king), 17 December (1907)

Constitution: no written constitution or bill of rights

Legal system: based on Indian law and English common law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

International law organization participation


Suffrage: each family has one vote in village-level elections

Executive branch: Chief of State and Head of Government--King Jigme Singye WANGCHUCK (since 24 July 1972)

Legislative branch: Royal Bhutan Army

Judicial branch: High Court

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation: ADB, Colombo Plan, ESCAP, FAO, G-77, IBRD, IDA, IFAD, IMF, NAM, SAARC, UNESCO, UPU, UN, WHO

Diplomatic representation
In the us: no formal diplomatic relations, although informal contact is maintained between the Bhutanese and US Embassies in New Delhi (India; the Bhutanese mission to the UN in New York has consular jurisdiction in the US

Flag descriptionflag of Bhutan: divided diagonally from the lower hoist side corner; the upper triangle is orange and the lower triangle is red; centered along the dividing line is a large black and white dragon facing away from the hoist side

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Bhutan - Economy 1990
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Economy overview: The economy is based on agriculture and forestry, which provide the main livelihood for 90% of the population and account for about 50% of GDP. One of the world's least developed countries, rugged mountains dominate and make the building of roads and other infrastructure difficult and expensive. Bhutan's hydropower potential and its attraction for tourists are its most important natural resources.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate

Real gdp per capita ppp

Gross national saving
Gdp composition by sector of origin

Gdp composition by end use

Gdp composition by sector of origin

Agriculture products: accounts for 50% of GDP; based on subsistence farming and animal husbandry; self-sufficient in food except for foodgrains; other production--rice, corn, root crops, citrus fruit, dairy, and eggs

Industries: cement, chemical products, mining, distilling, food processing, handicrafts

Industrial production growth rate: - 12.4% (1988 est.)

Labor force:
NA; 95% agriculture, 1%
industry and commerce; massive lack of skilled labor (1983)

Labor force

Unemployment rate: NA

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Budget: revenues $99 million; expenditures $128 million, including capital expenditures of $65 million (FY89 est.)

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: 1 July-30 June

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices

Central bank discount rate

Commercial bank prime lending rate

Stock of narrow money

Stock of broad money

Stock of domestic credit

Market value of publicly traded shares

Current account balance

Exports: $70.9 million (f.o.b., FY89)
Commodities: cardamon, gypsum, timber, handicrafts, cement, fruit
Partners: India 93%

Imports: $138.3 million (c.i.f., FY89 est.)
Commodities: fuel and lubricants, grain, machinery and parts, vehicles, fabrics
Partners: India 67%

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external: $70.1 million (FY89 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: ngultrum (Nu) per US$1--16.965 (January 1990), 16.226 (1989), 13.917 (1988), 12.962 (1987), 12.611 (1986), 12.369 (1985; note--the Bhutanese ngultrum is at par with the Indian rupee

Bhutan - Energy 1990
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Electricity access

Electricity production

Electricity consumption

Electricity exports

Electricity imports

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources


Refined petroleum

Natural gas

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita

Bhutan - Communication 1990
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Bhutan - Military 1990
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Military expenditures
Percent of gdp: NA

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Bhutan - Transportation 1990
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 2 total, 2 usable; 1 with permanent-surface runways; none with runways over 2,439 m; 2 with runways 1,220-2,439 m

Airports with paved runways

Airports with unpaved runways






Merchant marine

Ports and terminals

Bhutan - Transnational issues 1990
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Disputes international

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs


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