Thursday 2nd of December 2021 01:02:54 PM

Fact sheet on Bhutan

Local name of the country Druk Yul or the Land of the Thunder Dragon
Form of Government Democratic Constitutional Monarchy
Head of State His Majesty the King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck
Head of Government H.E. Lyonchhen Dr. Lotay Tshering
Administrative units 20 Dzongkhags (districts) 205 Gewogs (blocks)
Capital city Thimphu
Language Dzongkha is the official language; many local dialects are spoken; English is the medium of instruction in educational institutes and is widely spoken
Religion Predominantly Vajrayana Buddhism, with Hinduism and other religions also practiced
Development vision Gross National Happiness (GNH)
Location Eastern Himalayas Landlocked between China to the north; India to the south, east and west
Land area 38,394 square kilometres
Altitude 100 metres above sea level in the foothills to over 7,500 metres in the north (within a range of 170 km from the northern to the southern border)
Climate Three distinct climatic zones i.e. hot and humid southern belt, cool-temperature central zone, and alpine northern region
Environment 71% of the country is under forest cover 51% is under a network of protected areas and biological corridors Bhutan is a net carbon sink and is among the top ten global biodiversity hotspots

Key Socio-Economic Indicators Year Source
  Population 727,145 Female 47.7% Male 52.3% 2017 PHCB 2017, NSB
Total Fertility Rate (TFR) 2% 2017 PHCB 2017, NSB
Life expectancy 69.5 years 2015 AHB 2018, MoH
General literacy rate 71.4% 2017 PHCB 2017, NSB
Youth literacy rate 93.1% 2017 AES 2018, MoE
Poverty rate 8.2% 2017 PAR 2017, NSB
Multidimensional Poverty rate 5.8% 2017 MPI 2017, NSB
  GNH Index 0.756 This is an increase of 1.8 percent from 2010, driven primarily by improved conditions in living standards, service delivery, health and cultural vitality 2015 GNH Survey 2015, CBS
  HDI Index 0.612 Bhutan is in the medium HDI category 2017 HDI 2018 statistical update, UNDP NY
GDP USD 2.4 billion (Nu.164.6 billion) 2017 NAS 2018, NSB
Per capita GDP USD 3438 2017 NAS 2018, NSB
Growth rate An average of 7.5% over the last three decades 12th FYP Document
CPI Inflation 4.96% 2017 NAS 2018, NSB
Unemployment rate 2.4% 2017 PHCB 2017, NSB
Youth unemployment 10.6% 2017 PHCB 2017, NSB


PHCB: Population and Housing Census of Bhutan

ABH: Annual Health Bulletin

AES: Annual Education Statistics

PAR: Poverty Analysis Report

MPI: Multidimensional Poverty Index

HDI: Human Development Index

NAS: National Accounts Statistics

NSB: National Statistical Bureau

MoH: Ministry of Health

MoE: Ministry of Education

FYP: Five Year Plan

UNDP NY: United Nations Development Programme, New York