Bhutan - Public finance



The largest category of annual current expenditure is public works, which presumably includes the maintenance of monasteries. Most of the annual budget deficit is covered by grants from India and from the UN and other international agencies. By 1996, Bhutan had achieved self-sufficiency in current expenses, thanks primarily to revenues from the Chhukha power project, Bhutan's largest hydro-electric plant.

The US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) estimates that in 1995/1996 Bhutan's central government took in revenues of approximately $146 million and had expenditures of $152 million. Overall, the government registered a deficit of approximately $6 million. External debt totaled $245 million.

The following table shows an itemized breakdown of government revenues and expenditures. The percentages were calculated from data reported by the International Monetary Fund. The dollar amounts (millions) are based on the CIA estimates provided above.

Bhutan

REVENUE AND GRANTS 100.0% 146
Tax revenue 27.3% 40
Non-tax revenue 36.1% 53
Capital revenue 0.5% 1
Grants 36.2% 53
EXPENDITURES 100.0% 152
General public services 21.9% 33
Public order and safety 5.0% 8
Education 15.6% 24
Health 10.2% 15
Housing and community amenities 7.7% 12
Recreation, cultural, and religious affairs 1.8% 3
Economic affairs and services 37.1% 56
Interest payments 0.9% 1
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