Area: 46,500 sq. km.
Cities: Capital--Thimphu (pop. approx. 55,000) Other
significant cities--Paro, Phoentsholing, Punakha, Bumthong.
Terrain: Mountainous, from the Himalayas to lower-lying foothills
and some savannah.
Climate: Alpine to temperate to subtropical with monsoon season from
June to September.
Nationality: Noun and adjective--Bhutanese.
Population. Approximately 672,425 (according to the 2005 census)
Annual growth rate: 2.12% (2006 est.). Density--14 per sq. km.
Ethnic groups: Drukpa 50% (which is also inclusive of Sharchops), as
well as ethnic Nepalese (Lhotsampas) 35%, and indigenous or migrant
Religions: Lamaistic Buddhist 75% (state religion), Indian- and
Nepalese-influenced Hinduism 25%.
Languages: Dzongka (official language), English (medium of
instruction), Sharchop, Nepali.
Education: Years compulsory--11. Literacy--54% (est.). Primary
school gross enrollment rate (2004)--81%. Women's literacy
Health: Infant mortality rate--total: 98.41 deaths/1,000 live
births; female: 100.79 deaths/1,000 live births (2006 est.); male:
96.14 deaths/1,000 live births). Life expectancy--total population
54.78 years; male 55.02 years; female 54.53 years (2006 est.).
Work force (2002): Agriculture--93%; Industry: 2%, Services: 5%
There is a high unemployment rate.
Type: Evolving from a monarchy to a constitutional monarchy The
Royal Government, prompted by the King, released a draft
constitution in March 2005. The King and Crown Prince conducted
consultations on the constitution in all 20 dzongkhag (districts.)
in 2005 and 2006. Bhutan will adopt the constitution in early 2008
when the King abdicates the throne in favor of the Crown Prince.
National Day: December 17 (1907)
Branches: Executive--King or Druk Gyalpo (chief of state), Prime
Minister (head of government), Council of Ministers, Royal Advisory
Council (together they make the Cabinet or Lhengye Zhungtsho).
Advisory--Monastic Order (or Monk Body-Dratshang).
Legislative--National Assembly (Tshogdu). Judicial--High Court (Thrimkhang
Gogma), District Courts, and local area arbitration.
Administrative subdivisions: 20.
Political parties: None.
Suffrage: Registered resident with legitimate citizenship, age 21
GDP (purchasing power parity 2003): U.S. $2.9 billion.
Real growth rate (2004): 6.5%.
Per capita GDP (2004): U.S. $929.60.
Natural resources: Hydroelectric power, construction, timber,
gypsum, calcium carbide.
Agriculture and forestry (all figs., 2001): 33.8% of GDP.
Construction: 11.8% of GDP.
Finance: 10.3% of GDP.
Transport and communication: 10% of GDP.
Electricity: 9.9% of GDP.
Government service: 9.9% of GDP.
Manufacturing: 9.8% of GDP.
Trade: Exports (2001-02)--U.S. $ 97.7 million: hydroelectricity,
vegetables and fruits, processed foods, minerals, wood products,
textiles, machinery. Imports (2001-02)--U.S.$188.4 million:
machinery, mechanical appliances and electronics, plastics and
rubber products, textiles, whiskies and prepared foodstuffs,
medicines and pharmaceuticals, vegetable oils and foodstuffs. Major
trade partners--India, Bangladesh, Japan, Singapore, Denmark.