The Sorry Saga of Bhutan's North

The Sorry Saga of Bhutan's North
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Friday, July 23, 2010

2011 Budget

2010 - 11 budget highlights

Social services get the lion’s share, as usual
27 June, 2010 - In keeping with past trends, the social service sector, health and education, has the highest allocation, with an outlay of Nu 8.21B, which is 23 percent of the 2010-11 budget.

Under health, the budget includes provision to construct a regional hospital in Gelephu, and the Bhutan institute of medical sciences, reconstruction of the Samtse and Dagana hospitals, and construction and relocation of 17 basic health units (BHU).

Budget has also been kept for 10 more ambulances, apart from the 10 that the government of Japan is expected to provide in the next fiscal year.

16,200 rural households to receive power
10 new PS, LSS, MSS, HSS schools to be built

13 new bailey and motorable bridges

Nu 805.5 M for HRD

218 KMs of National highways

17 new BHUs

242 new rural water schemes

A total of 242 new water supply schemes is to built at a cost of Nu 83.6M, and 170 rehabilitated with a budget of Nu 40.26M. The new fiscal year also has a budget of Nu 64.081M for ongoing and new scholarships for doctors, nurses and technicians.

The major capital works in the education sector are building three lower secondary schools, five new middle secondary schools, two higher secondary schools and a primary school in nine dzongkhags. Other work includes building hostels, labs, multipurpose halls, libraries and dining halls in institutes across the country.

The renewable natural resources sector has an outlay of Nu 3.54B, or 10 percent of the budget; of which a sizeable portion is the construction of farm roads. According to the budget report, funding for farm roads has largely been mobilised, with a large part of the resources coming from the government of India, and other development partners providing substantial support.

About Nu 740M has been set aside for the construction of farm roads that is expected to connect 73 percent of all gewog centres by the next financial year. There is a budget of Nu 26.940M for maintenance, and Nu 200M as a pool fund that will be allocated, as when gewogs are ready to start the building the roads that are in the plans. A total of 62 RNR centres, including those under construction, will be built in the coming fiscal year.

The total budget for the roads sector is Nu 3.4B, about 10 percent of the budget; of which Nu 648M is for resurfacing, Nu 2.2B for road constructions and Nu 647M for building bridges.

The target for this financial year is to complete 218 km of highways in Dagana, Chukha, Samdrupjongkhar Panbang, Zhemgang and Mongar; and includes spillover work like the Gyalpoizhing-Nganglam and Samtse-Phuentsholing highways.

The budget will also go into completing mainly spillover work of dzongkhag roads, of a total length of 182 km, in Chukha, Dagana, Lhuentse, Mongar, Pemagatshel, Trashigang and Wangduephodrang.

On the major bridges to be built or completed in the coming year are the Nishioka 1,500 ft bridge in Zhemgang, the Amochu bridge on the Samtse-Phuentsholing highway and the Mangdechu bridge in Trongsa. All are spillover works. A Nu 10M budget has also been set aside for a cable stayed single lane motorable bridge over the Maokhola in Gelephu.

Urban development, housing and public amenities have a budget of Nu 1.6B, much of which will go into local area plans and water supply projects for Thimphu city. Trashigang will get a sewerage treatment plant and solid waste management plan.

Under communications and transport, the major projects are the implementation of the total solutions project, the broadband master plan, the SASEC information highway project and the IT park in Wangchutaba, besides the building of the three airports.

Law and order has quite a substantial budget, as in the past, with Nu 2.6B earmarked for the relevant agencies, which includes the judiciary and the royal Bhutan police (RBP). RBP has a budget of Nu 1.1B, mainly for construction of family quarters all across the country and for transport.

The judiciary’s total budget is around Nu 383M, mainly for building dungkhag and district courts in several dzongkhags, and continuing work on building the Supreme Court.

By Phuntsho Wangdi

From Kuensel

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