Statistical information Bhutan 1995Bhutan

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 1995
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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 1995
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Location: Southern Asia, between China and India

Geographic coordinates

Map referenceAsia

Total area total: 47,000 km²
Land: 47,000 km²
Comparative: slightly more than half the size of Indiana

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

Coastline: 0 km (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
Arable land: 2%
Permanent crops: 0%
Meadows and pastures: 5%
Forest and woodland: 70%
Other: 23%

Irrigated land: 340 km² (1989 est.)

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 1995
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Population: 1,780,638 (July 1995 est.)
Note: other estimates range as low as 600,000
Growth rate: 2.34% (1995 est.)

Noun: Bhutanese (singular and plural)
Adjective: Bhutanese

Ethnic groups: Bhote 50%, ethnic Nepalese 35%, indigenous or migrant tribes 15%

Languages: Dzongkha (official), Bhotes speak various Tibetan dialects; Nepalese speak various Nepalese dialects

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

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure
0-14 years: 40% (female 342,276; male 368,916)
15-64 years: 56% (female 486,258; male 513,560)
65 years and over: 4% (female 34,215; male 35,413) (July 1995 est.)

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate: 2.34% (1995 est.)

Birth rate: 39.02 births/1000 population (1995 est.)

Death rate: 15.61 deaths/1000 population (1995 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1000 population (1995 est.)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: soil erosion; limited access to potable water
Current issues natural hazards: violent storms coming down from the Himalayas are the source of the country's name which translates as Land of the Thunder Dragon; frequent landslides during the rainy season
Current issues international agreements: party to - Nuclear Test Ban; signed, but not ratified - Biodiversity, Climate Change, Law of the Sea

Air pollutants

Sex ratio

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate: 118.6 deaths/1000 live births (1995 est.)

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 51.03 years
Male: 51.56 years
Female: 50.48 years (1995 est.)

Total fertility rate: 5.39 children born/woman (1995 est.)

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: NA%

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Bhutan - Government 1995
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Country name
Conventional long form: Kingdom of Bhutan
Conventional short form: Bhutan

Government type: monarchy; special treaty relationship with India

Capital: Thimphu

Administrative divisions: 18 districts (dzongkhag, singular and plural; Bumthang, Chhukha, Chirang, Daga, Geylegphug, Ha, Lhuntshi, Mongar, Paro, Pemagatsel, Punakha, Samchi, Samdrup Jongkhar, Shemgang, Tashigang, Thimphu, Tongsa, Wangdi Phodrang

Dependent areas

Independence: 8 August 1949 (from India)

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

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)
Royal Advisory Council Lodoi Tsokde: nominated by the king
Cabinet: Council of Ministers (Lhengye Shungtsog); appointed by the king

Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly (Tshogdu; no national elections

Judicial branch: High Court

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation: AsDB, CP, ESCAP, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, IDA, IFAD, IMF, INTELSAT, IOC, ITU, NAM, SAARC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WHO, WIPO

Diplomatic representation
In the us: Bhutan has no embassy in the US, but does have a Permanent Mission to the UN, headed by Ugyen TSERING, located at 2 United Nations Plaza, 27th Floor, New York, NY 10,017, telephone [1] (212) 826-1919; note - the Bhutanese mission to the UN has consular jurisdiction in the US
In the us consulates general: New York
In the us honorary consulates: San Francisco; Washington, DC
From the us: no formal diplomatic relations, although informal contact is maintained between the Bhutanese and US Embassy in New Delhi (India)

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 1995
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Economy overview: The economy, one of the world's least developed, is based on agriculture and forestry, which provide the main livelihood for 90% of the population and account for about half of GDP. Agriculture consists largely of subsistence farming and animal husbandry. Rugged mountains dominate the terrain and make the building of roads and other infrastructure difficult and expensive. The economy is closely aligned with India's through strong trade and monetary links. The industrial sector is small and technologically backward, with most production of the cottage industry type. Most development projects, such as road construction, rely on Indian migrant labor. Bhutan's hydropower potential and its attraction for tourists are key resources; however, the government limits the number of tourists to 4,000 per year to minimize foreign influence. Much of the impetus for growth has come from large public-sector companies. Nevertheless, in recent years, Bhutan has shifted toward decentralized development planning and greater private initiative. The government privatized several large public-sector firms, is revamping its trade regime and liberalizing administerial procedures over industrial licensing. The government's industrial contribution to GDP decreased from 13% in 1988 to about 11% in 1993.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate: 5% (1994 est.)

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: rice, corn, root crops, citrus fruit, dairy products, foodgrains, eggs

Industries: cement, wood products, processed fruits, alcoholic beverages, calcium carbide

Industrial production growth rate: 7.6% (1992 est.), accounts for 18% of GDP; primarily cottage industry and home based handicrafts

Labor force: NA
By occupation agriculture: 93%
By occupation services: 5%
By occupation industry and commerce: 2%
Note: massive lack of skilled labor
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

Revenues: $52 million
Expenditures: $150 million, including capital expenditures of $95 million (FY93/94 est.)
Note: the government of India finances nearly three-fifths of Bhutan's budget expenditures

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: $66.8 million (f.o.b., FY93/94)
Commodoties: cardamon, gypsum, timber, handicrafts, cement, fruit, electricity (to India), precious stones, spices
Partners: India 87%, Bangladesh

Imports: $97.6 million (c.i.f., FY93/94 est.)
Commodoties: fuel and lubricants, grain, machinery and parts, vehicles, fabrics, rice
Partners: India 79%, Japan, UK, Germany, US

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external: $141 million (October 1994)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: ngultrum (Nu) per US$1 - 31.374 (January 1995), 31.374 (1994), 30.493 (1993), 25.918 (1992), 22.742 (1991), 17.504 (1990; note - the Bhutanese ngultrum is at par with the Indian rupee

Bhutan - Energy 1995
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 1.7 billion kWh
Consumption per capita: 143 kWh (1993)
Note: Bhutan exports electricity to India

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 1995
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system: NA telephones; domestic telephone service is very poor with very few telephones in use
Local: NA
Intercity: NA
International: international telephone and telegraph service is by land line through India; an earth station was planned (1990)

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Bhutan - Military 1995
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Military expenditures: $NA, NA% of GDP

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Bhutan - Transportation 1995
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 2
With paved runways 15-24 to 2437 m: 1
With unpaved runways 914 to 1523 m: 1

Airports with paved runways
15-24 to 2437 m: 1

Airports with unpaved runways
914 to 1523 m: 1






Merchant marine

Ports and terminals

Bhutan - Transnational issues 1995
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Disputes international: none

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs

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