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Bhutan’s National Transport Policy: Inclusive planning for a low carbon future


This country briefing, from the LEDS GP Transport Working Group, provides a situational analysis of the transport sector in Bhutan.

Electricity generation contributes to about 25% of Bhutan’s Gross Domestic Product, with hydropower the dominant mode of power generation. This high generation capacity enables Bhutan to export of 75% of its electricity and, over the past decade, almost all rural households have been connected to the electricity grid. The country produces about 20,833 gigawatt hours of energy per year. However, rising fuel consumption contributes to increasing energy demands, and these are projected to increase further up to 2035.

Overall, energy consumption has grown rapidly over the past decade. While energy use in buildings decreased, the transport sector’s demand has risen and it is the single largest contributor to this growth. This case study provides a situational analysis of the transport sector in Bhutan and gives background information on the development and implementation of its current National Transport Policy and other relevant plans, projects, and policies.

The report suggests that the outlook for the development of Bhutan’s transport sector is positive. Despite the challenges on the horizon, the government has shown its commitment to improving road transport and urban transport, as well as increasing regional connectivity through air and rail links.

The recent work on the new National Transport Policy shows the progress the government and its international partners have made. The policy aims to be much more inclusive of all transport modes and priorities than previous planning documents. More importantly, it streamlines the organization of policy and planning within the appropriate agencies, and integrates important cornerstones of Bhutan’s development philosophy and the Sustainable Development Goals into transport operations.

Download the full case study: Bhutan’s National Transport Policy: Inclusive transport planning for a low carbon future