Bhutan



Official Country Name
Bhutan

Bhutan Overview
In 1865, Britain and Bhutan signed the Treaty of Sinchulu, under which Bhutan would receive an annual subsidy in exchange for ceding some border land to British India. Under British influence, a monarchy was set up in 1907; three years later, a treaty was signed whereby the British agreed not to interfere in Bhutanese internal affairs and Bhutan allowed Britain to direct its foreign affairs. This role was assumed by independent India after 1947. Two years later, a formal Indo-Bhutanese accord returned the areas of Bhutan annexed by the British, formalized the annual subsidies the country received, and defined India's responsibilities in defense and foreign relations. A refugee issue of some 100,000 Bhutanese in Nepal remains unresolved; 90% of the refugees are housed in seven United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) camps. In March 2005, King Jigme Singye WANGCHUCK unveiled the government's draft constitution - which would introduce major democratic reforms - and pledged to hold a national referendum for its approval. A referendum date has yet to be named.

Bhutan Economy
The economy, one of the world's smallest and least developed, is based on agriculture and forestry, which provide the main livelihood for more than 80% of the population. 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 and dependence on India's financial assistance. The industrial sector is 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. Model education, social, and environment programs are underway with support from multilateral development organizations. Each economic program takes into account the government's desire to protect the country's environment and cultural traditions. For example, the government, in its cautious expansion of the tourist sector, encourages visits by upscale, environmentally conscientious tourists. Detailed controls and uncertain policies in areas like industrial licensing, trade, labor, and finance continue to hamper foreign investment.

Bhutan Location
Bhutan is located in Southern Asia, between China and India

Region
Bhutan is located in Asia

Bhutan Population
Bhutan has population of 2,279,723

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

Bhutan Terrain
mostly mountainous with some fertile valleys and savanna

Bhutan Natural Resources
timber, hydropower, gypsum, calcium carbonate

Ethnic Groups in Bhutan
Bhutan has the following ethnic groups - Bhote 50%, ethnic Nepalese 35% (includes Lhotsampas - one of several Nepalese ethnic groups), indigenous or migrant tribes 15%

Bhutan Religions
Lamaistic Buddhist 75%, Indian- and Nepalese-influenced Hinduism 25%

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

Bhutan Capital
Bhutan capital is Thimphu

Bhutan Currency
Bhutan currency is ngultrum (BTN); Indian rupee (INR)

Map of Bhutan