The Human Truth Foundation

Bhutan (Kingdom of Bhutan)

By Vexen Crabtree 2013

#bhutan

Bhutan
Kingdom of Bhutan
StatusIndependent State
Social and Moral Index87th best
CapitalThimphu
Land Area 38 394km21
LocationAsia
Population0.8m2
Life Expectancy69.85yrs (2017)3
GNI$7 081 (2017)4
ISO3166-1 CodesBT, BTN, 645
Internet Domain.bt6
CurrencyNgultrum (BTN)7
Telephone+9758

1. Overview

#buddhism #nepal

In 1865, Britain and Bhutan signed the Treaty of Sinchulu, under which Bhutan would receive an annual subsidy in exchange for ceding some border land to British India. Under British influence, a monarchy was set up in 1907; three years later, a treaty was signed whereby the British agreed not to interfere in Bhutanese internal affairs, and Bhutan allowed Britain to direct its foreign affairs. This role was assumed by independent India after 1947. Two years later, a formal Indo-Bhutanese accord returned to Bhutan the areas annexed by the British, formalized the annual subsidies the country received, and defined India's responsibilities in defense and foreign relations. In March 2005, King Jigme Singye WANGCHUCK unveiled the government's draft constitution - which introduced major democratic reforms - and pledged to hold a national referendum for its approval. In December 2006, the King abdicated the throne in favor of his son, Jigme Khesar Namgyel WANGCHUCK, in order to give him experience as head of state before the democratic transition. In early 2007, India and Bhutan renegotiated their treaty to allow Bhutan greater autonomy in conducting its foreign policy, although Thimphu continues to coordinate policy decisions in this area with New Delhi. Elections for seating the country's first parliament were completed in March 2008; the king ratified the country's first constitution in July 2008. The disposition of some 40,000 Bhutanese refugees - housed in two UN refugee camps in Nepal - remains unresolved.

CIA's The World Factbook (2013)9

Book CoverBhutan is no ordinary place. It is a Himalayan kingdom with a reputation for mystery and magic, where a traditional Buddhist culture carefully embraces global developments. Bhutan holds many surprises. It´s a country where the rice is red and where chillies aren´t just a seasoning but the main ingredient. It´s also a deeply Buddhist land, where monasteries are part of the mainstream, and where giant protective penises are painted beside the entrance to many houses. ... You will find the Bhutanese well educated, fun loving and vibrant.

[It has an] amazing Himalayan landscape, where snowcapped peaks rise above shadowy gorges cloaked in primeval forests. Taking up prime positions in this picture-book landscape are the majestic, fortress-like dzongs and monasteries. This unique architecture embodies Buddhist culture and sets the scene for spectacular tsechus (dance festivals). Then there are the textiles and handicrafts, outrageous archery competitions, high-altitude trekking trails, and stunning flora and fauna.

"The World" by Lonely Planet (2014)10

2. Bhutan National and Social Development

#economics #human_development

UN HDI (2016)11
Pos.Lower is better
Rank11
1Norway1
2Australia2
3Switzerland2
...
129Tajikistan129
130Honduras130
131India131
132Bhutan132
133Timor-Leste (E. Timor)133
134Vanuatu134
135Congo, (Brazzaville)135
136Equatorial Guinea135
World Avg94.3
q=188.
Gross National Income Per-Capita (2011)12
Pos.Higher is better
PPP $12
1Qatar$129 916
2Singapore$78 162
3Kuwait$76 075
...
117Belize$7 375
118Ukraine$7 361
119Morocco$7 195
120Bhutan$7 081
121Guatemala$7 063
122Guyana$6 884
123Angola$6 291
124Bolivia$6 155
World Avg$17 240
q=193.
Social & Moral
Development Index
13,14
Pos.Lower is better
Avg Rank13,14
1Taiwan30.2
2Denmark30.5
3Norway30.9
...
84Colombia82.8
85Morocco82.9
86Jamaica83.1
87Bhutan83.7
88Kyrgyzstan84.2
89Kuwait85.2
90Guatemala85.2
91Dominican Rep.85.5
World Avg86.4
q=195.

The United Nations produces an annual Human Development Report which includes the Human Development Index. The factors taken into account include life expectancy, education and schooling and Gross National Income (GNI) amongst many others..

The Social and Moral Development Index concentrates on moral issues and human rights, violence, public health, equality, tolerance, freedom and effectiveness in climate change mitigation and environmentalism, and on some technological issues. A country scores higher for achieving well in those areas, and for sustaining that achievement in the long term. Those countries towards the top of this index can truly said to be setting good examples and leading humankind onwards into a bright, humane, and free future. See: Which are the Best Countries in the World? The Social and Moral Development Index.

3. Bhutan's Demographics

#birth_control #demographics #health #immigration #life_expectancy #longevity #migration #overpopulation #population

Population:

Bhutan's population is predicted to rise to 899 053 by 2030. This country has a fertility rate of 2.27. The fertility rate is, in simple terms, the average amount of children that each woman has. The higher the figure, the quicker the population is growing, although, to calculate the rate you also need to take into account morbidity, i.e., the rate at which people die. If people live healthy and long lives and morbidity is low, then, 2.0 approximates to the replacement rate, which would keep the population stable. If all countries had such a fertility rate, population growth would end. The actual replacement rate in most developed countries is around 2.1.

Population (2018)2
Pos.
Population2
1China1.4b
2India1.4b
3USA327.1m
...
159Fiji0.9m
160Comoros0.8m
161Guyana0.8m
162Bhutan0.8m
163Solomon Islands0.7m
164Montenegro0.6m
165Luxembourg0.6m
166Suriname0.6m
World Avg39.0m
q=195.
Life Expectancy (2015)12
Pos.Higher is better
Years12
1Hong Kong84.16
2Japan83.68
3Italy83.34
...
117Fiji70.15
118Belize70.08
119Nepal69.99
120Bhutan69.85
121Mongolia69.81
122Syria69.65
123Iraq69.63
124Kazakhstan69.59
World Avg71.27
q=190.
Fertility Rate (2013)15
Pos.2.0 is best15
1N. Korea2.00
2Brunei1.99
3St Vincent & Grenadines2.01
...
40Sri Lanka2.26
41Armenia1.74
42Kuwait2.27
43Bhutan2.27
44Jamaica2.28
45Suriname2.28
46Uzbekistan2.29
47Cape Verde2.29
World Avg2.81
q=180.
Old-Age Dependency Ratio (2016)16
Pos.Lower is better
Per 10016
1Uganda04.3
2Mali04.5
3Chad04.7
...
74S. Africa10.5
75Bangladesh10.6
76Nepal10.8
77Bhutan10.8
78Micronesia10.8
79Honduras11.0
80Turkmenistan11.0
81Maldives11.0
World Avg18.3
q=185.

Migration:

Immigrants (2017)17
Pos.
%17
1UAE88.4%
2Kuwait75.5%
3Qatar65.2%
...
73S. Sudan6.7%
74Grenada6.6%
75Armenia6.5%
76Bhutan6.5%
77Macedonia6.3%
78Finland6.2%
79Marshall Islands6.2%
80Turkey6.0%
World Avg9.4%
q=195.
Emigrants (2010)18
Pos.
%18
1Dominica104.8%
2Palestine68.4%
3Samoa67.3%
...
89Guinea-Bissau6.8%
90Slovenia6.5%
91Kiribati6.5%
92Bhutan6.3%
93Tunisia6.3%
94Finland6.2%
95Singapore6.1%
96Guatemala6.1%
World Avg11.5%
q=192.

4. Bhutan's Human Rights, Equality & Tolerance

#equality #freedom #gender #gender_equality #homosexuality #human_rights #international_law #mass_media #misogyny #morals #politics #prejudice #tolerance #women

Human Rights, Equality & Tolerance (2020)19,20
Pos.Lower is better
Avg Rank19,20
1Denmark9.7
2Sweden10.0
3Norway16.1
...
156Congo, DR123.1
157Gambia123.2
158Antigua & Barbuda123.5
159Bhutan124.4
160Malawi125.3
161Iraq125.3
162Burundi125.7
163Malaysia127.3
164Equatorial Guinea128.1
World Avg89.8
q=199.

The best countries in the world at ensuring human rights, fostering equality and promoting tolerance, are Denmark, Sweden and Norway19. These countries are displaying the best traits that humanity has to offer. The worst countries are Tuvalu, The Solomon Islands and Palestine19.

The data sets used to calculate points for each country are statistics on commentary in Human Rights Watch reports, its nominal commitment to Human Rights, speed of uptake of HR treaties, supporting personal, civil & economic freedoms, supporting press freedom, eliminating modern slavery, opposing gender inequality, the year from which women could participate in democracy, its success in fighting anti-semitic prejudice and LGBT equality. The regions with the best average results per country are Scandinavia, Baltic States and Europe19, whereas the worst are Micronesia, Melanesia and Australasia19.

Human Rights & Tolerance:

Nominal Commitment to HR (2009)21
Pos.Higher is better
Treaties21
1Argentina24
2Chile23
3Costa Rica23
...
187Singapore5
188Nauru5
189Marshall Islands4
190Myanmar (Burma)4
191Palau4
192Malaysia4
193Bhutan3
194Kiribati3
World Avg15.1
q=194.
HR Treaties Lag (2019)22
Pos.Lower is better
Avg Yrs/Treaty22
1Ecuador2.15
2Uruguay2.25
3Tunisia3.65
...
150Georgia12.77
151Suriname12.81
152Andorra12.91
153Bhutan13.01
154Swaziland13.16
155Equatorial Guinea13.18
156Vanuatu13.21
157Guinea-Bissau13.23
World Avg10.02
q=195.
Personal, Civil & Economic Freedom (2014)23
Pos.Lower is better
Rank23
1Hong Kong1
2Switzerland2
3New Zealand3
...
77Paraguay77
78Mexico77
79Trinidad & Tobago79
80Bhutan79
81Benin79
82Brazil82
83Tajikistan83
84Nepal84
World Avg79.7
q=159.
Press Freedom (2013)24
Pos.Lower is better24
1Finland638
2Netherlands648
3Norway652
...
78Benin2833
79Dominican Rep.2834
80Lesotho2836
81Bhutan2842
82Togo2845
83Greece2846
84Kosovo2847
85Guinea2849
World Avg3249
q=178.

Gender Equality:

The 1950s saw a late rush of 43 countries, including Bhutan and many developing nations, move to cease preventing women from voting. Bhutan is an unequal country, with male rights dominating those of women.

See:

Gender Inequality (2015)25
Pos.Lower is better25
1Switzerland0.04
2Denmark0.04
3Netherlands0.04
...
107Dominican Rep.0.47
108Namibia0.47
109Burundi0.47
110Bhutan0.48
111Jordan0.48
112Cambodia0.48
113Morocco0.49
114Guatemala0.49
World Avg0.36
q=159.
Year Women Can Vote
Pos.Lower is better
Year
1New Zealand1893
2Australia1902
3Finland1906
...
94Lebanon1952
95Guyana1953
96Mexico1953
97Bhutan1953
98Syria1953
99Colombia1954
100Belize1954
101Ghana1954
World Avg1930
q=189.

Prejudice:

LGBT Equality (2017)26
Pos.Higher is better
Score26
1Netherlands103
2Belgium90
3Sweden86
...
156Maldives-19
157Afghanistan-19
158Liberia-20
159Bhutan-20
160Burundi-20
161Nigeria-22
162Malawi-22
163Uganda-22
World Avg12.6
q=196.

5. Bhutan's Health

#alcohol #Bhutan #birth_control #demographics #health #life_expectancy #longevity #obesity #overpopulation #parenting #population #smoking #vaccines

Health (2020)27,20
Pos.Lower is better
Avg Rank27,20
1Hong Kong18.0
2Singapore41.5
3Maldives43.3
4Japan50.9
5S. Korea52.0
6Sri Lanka55.0
7Oman57.9
8Bhutan58.6
9Brunei59.3
10Norway62.0
11China62.4
12Malaysia64.1
13Mauritius64.5
World Avg92.3
q=187.

The countries with the best overall approach to public health, in terms of both public policy and individual lifestyle choices, are Hong Kong, Singapore and The Maldives27. These countries are worth emulating. And, although often through no fault of the average citizen, the worst countries are S. Sudan, Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea27.

The data sets used to calculate points for each country are its average life expectancy, its alcohol consumption rate, its fertility rate, its smoking rate, its suicide rate, its food aid and health contributions and WHO compliance, the prevalence of overweight adults, its adolescent birth rate and its immunizations take-up. The regions with the best average results per country are Scandinavia, Asia and Europe27, whereas the worst are Africa, Micronesia and Polynesia27.

Health:

Bhutan does relatively well in encouraging good health, compared to many other countries. Bhutan comes in the best 20 for its alcohol consumption rate28. It does better than average in terms of its smoking rate29, its immunizations take-up30, its adolescent birth rate25 and in its fertility rate15. Bhutan does not succeed in everything, however. It does worse than average in its average life expectancy12. The prevalence of overweight adults has increased by 14% during the past 40 years.
Life Expectancy (2015)12
Pos.Higher is better
Years12
1Hong Kong84.16
2Japan83.68
3Italy83.34
...
117Fiji70.15
118Belize70.08
119Nepal69.99
120Bhutan69.85
121Mongolia69.81
122Syria69.65
123Iraq69.63
124Kazakhstan69.59
World Avg71.27
q=190.
Alcohol Consumption (2016)28
Pos.Lower is better
Per Capita28
1Bangladesh0.0
2Kuwait0.0
3Libya0.0
...
15Djibouti0.5
16Niger0.5
17Sudan0.5
18Bhutan0.6
19Morocco0.6
20Jordan0.7
21Senegal0.7
22Oman0.8
World Avg6.2
q=189.
Fertility Rate (2013)15
Pos.2.0 is best15
1N. Korea2.00
2Brunei1.99
3St Vincent & Grenadines2.01
...
40Sri Lanka2.26
41Armenia1.74
42Kuwait2.27
43Bhutan2.27
44Jamaica2.28
45Suriname2.28
46Uzbekistan2.29
47Cape Verde2.29
World Avg2.81
q=180.
Smoking Rates (2014)29
Pos.Higher is worse29
182Montenegro4 125
181Belarus3 831
180Lebanon3 023
...
36Gambia 166
35Zambia 165
34Chad 156
33Bhutan 155
32Mauritania 135
31Zimbabwe 134
30Benin 122
29Ghana 121
World Avg 819
q=182.
Overweight Adults (2016)31
Pos.Lower is better
%31
1Vietnam18.3
2India19.7
3Bangladesh20.0
...
25Guinea26.6
26Equatorial Guinea26.7
27Comoros27.1
28Bhutan27.1
29Japan27.2
30Angola27.5
31Philippines27.6
32Sierra Leone27.7
World Avg49.0
q=191.

Children's Health:

Adolescent Birth Rate (2015)25
Pos.Lower is better
Per 100025
1N. Korea0.5
2S. Korea1.6
3Switzerland2.9
...
61Serbia19.0
62Slovakia20.2
63Brunei21.0
64Bhutan21.4
65Djibouti21.5
66Albania21.7
67Moldova22.6
68USA22.6
World Avg47.9
q=185.
Infant Immunizations 2011-2015 (2015)30
Pos.Higher is better
Avg %30
1Hungary99.0
2China99.0
3Uzbekistan98.9
...
56Qatar95.6
57Armenia95.6
58Uruguay95.6
59Bhutan95.6
60Turkey95.5
61Malta95.5
62Botswana95.4
63Gambia95.4
World Avg88.3
q=194.

6. Bhutan's Modernity and Learning

#education #modernity #technology #the_internet

Modernity and Learning (2020)32
Pos.Lower is better
Avg Rank32
1Finland8.0
2Belgium9.1
3Denmark10.0
...
103Tonga76.0
104Oman76.1
105Maldives77.0
106Bhutan77.5
107Panama77.7
108Bolivia79.9
109Pakistan80.2
110Jamaica80.6
111Libya81.3
World Avg69.0
q=180.

Modernity and Education:

Secondary Education (2018)33
Pos.Higher is better33
1Luxembourg100.0%
2Estonia100.0%
3Austria100.0%
...
161Tanzania14.3%
162Mali13.1%
163Papua New Guinea12.5%
164Bhutan12.0%
165Guinea11.7%
166Burundi9.3%
167Burkina Faso8.8%
168Niger6.6%
World Avg63.0%
q=169.
Length of Schooling (2018)34
Pos.Higher is better
Years34
1Australia22.1
2Belgium19.7
3Finland19.3
...
124Nicaragua12.2
125Nepal12.2
126Qatar12.2
127Bhutan12.1
128Maldives12.1
129Zambia12.1
130El Salvador12.0
131Uzbekistan12.0
World Avg13.2
q=193.

Technology and Information:

Internet Users (2016)35
Pos.Higher is better35
1Iceland100%
2Faroe Islands99%
3Norway98%
...
122Guyana40%
123Grenada39%
124El Salvador38%
125Bhutan37%
126Mongolia36%
127India35%
128Kyrgyzstan34%
129Egypt33%
World Avg48.1%
q=201.
IPv6 Uptake (2017)36
Pos.Higher is better
Ratio36
1Belgium55.4
2Germany41.8
3Switzerland35.1
...
55Nauru0.5
56Egypt0.4
57Mexico0.4
58Bhutan0.4
59China0.3
60Iceland0.3
61Turkey0.3
62Uruguay0.3
World Avg3.82
q=176.

7. National Culture

#charity #corruption #happiness #morals #politics

Personal Charitability
(World Position, 2013-2016)
37
Pos.Lower is better37
1Myanmar (Burma)1.25
2USA1.5
3New Zealand3.5
...
15Malta14
16Indonesia14.75
17Iceland16
18Bhutan17.5
19Kenya17.75
20Jamaica20.5
21Austria21.25
22Kuwait21.5
World Avg68.1185897435897
q=156.
Corruption (2012-2016)38
Pos.Higher is better
Avg Score38
1Denmark90.8
2New Zealand90.6
3Finland89.4
...
27St Lucia68.3
28Estonia68.2
29Qatar67.4
30Bhutan64.2
31Botswana63.0
32Portugal62.8
33Cyprus61.6
34St Vincent & Grenadines61.5
World Avg43.05
q=176.
Happiness (2018)39
Pos.Higher is better39
1Finland7.6
2Norway7.6
3Denmark7.6
...
94Mongolia5.1
95Vietnam5.1
96Indonesia5.1
97Bhutan5.1
98Somalia5.0
99Cameroon5.0
100Bulgaria4.9
101Nepal4.9
World Avg5.38
q=156.

8. Peace Versus Instability

#extremism #human_development #peace #politics #religious_violence #terrorism

Global Peace Index (2012)40
Pos.Lower is better40
1Iceland1.11
2New Zealand1.24
3Denmark1.24
...
16Portugal1.47
17Hungary1.48
18Norway1.48
19Bhutan1.48
20Malaysia1.49
21Mauritius1.49
22Australia1.49
23Singapore1.52
World Avg2.02
q=157.
Impact of Terrorism (2019)41
Pos.Lower is better
Score41
1Togo0.00
2Mongolia0.00
3Swaziland0.00
...
11Costa Rica0.00
12Romania0.00
13El Salvador0.00
14Bhutan0.01
15Trinidad & Tobago0.02
16Uzbekistan0.02
17Qatar0.03
18Iceland0.03
World Avg2.78
q=150.

9. The Natural Environment

#biodiversity #climate_change #over-exploitation #the_environment

Forest Area Change 1990-2015 (2015)42
Pos.Higher is better
%42
1Iceland205.6
2Bahrain144.4
3Uruguay131.3
...
10Cuba56.9
11Cape Verde55.7
12Rwanda50.9
13Bhutan34.7
14Azerbaijan34.6
15Spain33.2
16China32.6
17Montenegro32.1
World Avg02.8
q=184.
Environmental Performance (2018)43
Pos.Higher is better43
1Switzerland87.4
2France84.0
3Denmark81.6
...
128Guyana47.9
129Tajikistan47.9
130Kenya47.3
131Bhutan47.2
132Vietnam47.0
133Indonesia46.9
134Guinea46.6
135Mozambique46.4
World Avg56.4
q=180.
Convention on Biological Diversity
Pos.Earlier is better
Signed
1China1993 Dec 29
2Guinea1993 Dec 29
3Cook Islands1993 Dec 29
...
123Israel1995 Nov 05
124Algeria1995 Nov 12
125Morocco1995 Nov 19
126Bhutan1995 Nov 23
127Mozambique1995 Nov 23
128Solomon Islands1996 Jan 01
129Togo1996 Jan 02
130Botswana1996 Jan 10
World Avg1899 Dec 30
q=197.

10. Economic Inequality and Poverty

#capitalism #economics #health #inequality #life_expectancy #poverty #social_development

Inequality in Life Expectancy (2019)44
Pos.Higher is worse44
184Chad40.90
183Central African Rep.40.10
182Sierra Leone39.00
...
125Nepal17.50
124Bangladesh17.30
123Venezuela17.10
122Bhutan17.10
121Dominican Rep.17.00
120Sao Tome & Principe17.00
119Tajikistan16.70
118Micronesia16.10
World Avg14.59
q=184.
Income Inequality (Gini Coefficient) (2017)45
Pos.Lower is better
%45
1Ukraine25.0
2Belarus25.4
3Slovenia25.4
...
75Solomon Islands37.1
76Lithuania37.4
77Bulgaria37.4
78Bhutan37.4
79Vanuatu37.6
80Tonga37.6
81Russia37.7
82Tanzania37.8
World Avg38.1
q=152.
Multidimensional Poverty (2018)46
Pos.Lower is better
Severity46
1Armenia.001
2Ukraine.001
3Serbia.001
...
59Cambodia.170
60Namibia.171
61Vanuatu.174
62Bhutan.175
63Myanmar (Burma).176
64Kenya.178
65Comoros.181
66Bangladesh.198
World Avg.154
q=101.

11. Religion and Beliefs

#buddhism #christianity #hinduism #islam #judaism

Data from the Pew Forum, a professional polling outfit, states that in 2010 the religious makeup of this country was as follows in the table below47:

Christian0.5%
Muslim0.2%
Hindu22.6%
Buddhist74.7%
Folk Religion1.9%
Jew0.1%
Unaffiliated0.1%

The CIA World Factbook has slightly different data, and states: Lamaistic Buddhist 75%, Indian- and Nepalese-influenced Hinduism 25%48.

Links: