Salient Features: Underdeveloped economy with
India as a result of geographic position and historical
relationship. Predominantly agricultural; limited
activity; services--particularly related to tourism,
of economy. Development of hydroelectric capabilities for
use and export also increasingly important. Increasing
concern and international cooperation with respect to
protection and resource conservation. Foreign aid--once
from India but increasingly from domestic sources,
countries, and international organizations (72.5 percent
92)--major component in economic development. Trade union
illegal; less than 1 percent of population involved in
Gross National Product (GNP): Nu3.9 billion
ngultrum). Per capita GNP US$150.
Gross Domestic Product (GDP): Nu3.4 billion
Agriculture: Including fishing and forestry:
of GDP projected for 1991. Traditionally self-sufficient
production, rice imports increasing in late 1980s.
percent of population involved in agriculture. Less than 6
of land cultivable; most farms terraced or used illegal
tsheri (shifting cultivation). Major crops corn and
Cash crops oranges, apples, and cardamon. Livestock raised
throughout country. Fresh water and hatchery fishing
dietary supplement. Modest use of irrigation and
Abundant forest resources--about 70 percent of country
forests; lumber industry 15 percent of GDP.
Industry: 26.4 percent of GDP projected for
1991. Only 1
percent of population involved in industry and
construction in late
1980s. Basic industries: handicrafts, cement, food
milling, and distilling; 400 small-scale cottage and
units. Limestone for cement production major mining and
product. Hydroelectric power major energy producer.
Services: 29 percent of GDP projected for 1991.
commercial services tourist-oriented plus
wholesale and retail trade. Tourism largest
(US$2 million in 1987).
Resources: High-grade limestone and slate;
dolomite, and graphite; deposits of copper, gypsum, lead,
tungsten, zinc, coal, beryl, mica, pyrites, tufa, and
Abundant hydroelectric power sources.
Foreign Trade: Principally with India. Total
1990 Nu1.2 billion in 1990, primarily electricity and
materials. Total imports in Nu1.8 billion in 1990,
and manufactured goods.
Balance of Payments: Early 1980s trade
80 percent of total trade--decreased as decade progressed.
represented 40 percent, imports 60 percent of total annual
Foreign Aid: Once 100 percent dependent on India
development funds and government revenue; since 1960s
from Colombo Plan, World Bank, United Nations, and private
plus domestic contributions, decreased Indian aid to 27.5
(Nu2.6 billion) of total input in Sixth Development Plan
Currency/Exchange Rate: Ngultrum (Nu). US$1 =
(January 1991). Ngultrum on par with Indian rupee.
Fiscal Year: July 1 to June 30.
Data as of September 1991