The Bhutan 2011-12 budget ensures that it stays among the few South Asian countries that will attain the Millennium Development Goals or MDGs.
Bhutan Budget 2011-12: Highlights
The 2011-12 Bhutan budget provides more funds for improving the infrastructural facilities at the education and the health sector.
37.9 billion Ngultrum is the aggregate budgetary outlay for the 2011-12 fiscal.
The estimated current expenditure for the 2011-12 fiscal is Nu 17.1 billion. The domestic revenues, which are supposed to amount to 18.6 billion Ngultrum, are expected to help the expenditure. The expenses include wages and salaries, current subsidies and interest payments.
India is supposed to provide financial aid amounting to Nu 10.2 billion, which will account for approximately 74.3% of the expenditure. 3.5 billion Ngultrum is expected to come from other sources.
The resource gap from the 2011-12 budget will be managed with fund balances of 2010-11 budget.
The social sectors, including education and health, will receive the majority of the budgetary expenditure Nu 9.9 billion.
This will be equivalent to 24 percent of the whole budget.
In the health sector, the government will focus on issues like reduction of infant mortality rate and creating new units of the Bhutan Institute of Medical Sciences and Basic Health and regional hospitals.
61.9 million Ngultrum has been earmarked for scholarships that are expected to reduce the shortfall in the number of medical professionals in the country.
In the educational sector, the government is putting majority of its efforts in the primary sector. The main aim by 2015 fiscal is to ensure every child in Bhutan attends school.
The government will also set aside 284.1 million Ngultrum as scholarship for students who are looking for higher educational opportunities outside the country.
The national administration is focusing in a major way on improving nationwide connectivity. Nu 740 million has been earmarked for setting up farm roads, which are estimated to connect 73% of the blocks.
The road sector has been provided with NU3.4 billion, which is almost 10% of the budget. The government will also construct two new domestic airports at Badpalathang and Gelephu in 2011-12.
The 2011-12 budget allots 50 million Ngultrum for creating 74 channels to be used for irrigation. This construction is also expected to help Bhutan address its poverty-related issues, which have been a focus area of the national government s tenth five year plan.
NU40.26 million has been earmarked for creating 242 new plans for water supply.
With this outlay the government will also try to provide its rural population with clean and safe drinking water.
Bhutan Budget 2011-12: Expert Analysis
Economic experts have stated that the 2011-12 budget is an ambitious one because of the risks associated with Bhutan s reliance on domestic earnings. The budget has a resource gap of Nu 5.3 billion that is approximately 14 percent of the aggregate outlay.
The main aim of the 2011-12 budget is to make sure all the priority sectors are properly covered so that from 2013-14 onwards, Bhutan can focus on fiscal consolidation.
The educational targets of the Bhutan government are expected to help the country achieve its Millennium Development Goals.