PM says Phuentshogling needs to bounce back to keep economy afloat

Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay, in his ongoing visit to Phuentshogling, highlighted the city’s crucial role as Bhutan’s economic hub and gateway. He emphasised the need for the town to recover from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, stating its importance in keeping the country’s economy afloat.


During interactive sessions with officials, tour operators, and the Phuentshogling business community yesterday, the prime minister was questioned and urged to provide solutions to various challenges and issues faced by the residents of Phuentshogling. Sustainable Development Fee for tourists was brought up frequently during the discussion.

“Removing the Sustainable Development Fee on tourists would greatly benefit us. Currently, it feels like the main gateway to Bhutan is blocked, impacting our business. Previously, we had many tourists from Sikkim who brought a lot of goods here, ultimately benefiting local traders,” said Pasang Dorji, a member of the Phuentshogling Business Community

“Easing restrictions on tourists, especially revisiting rules related to the SDF and entry regulations, would significantly benefit not just me but also other hoteliers. I faced challenges as I was not allowed to host any Indian tourists for over a year,” said Rinzin Gyem, another member of the Phuentshogling Business Community.

Meeting with the members of the Phuentshogling business community, the prime minister highlighted the border town’s importance for Bhutan’s economy and said Phuentshogling must recover from the crippling effects of COVID-19.

Prime Minister said, “Phuentshogling serves as Bhutan’s economic hub and gateway. The well-being of the entire nation is linked with the prosperity of Phuentshogling. Unfortunately, the impact of COVID-19 has been severe on the city, and unless it swiftly recovers, the entire country will face challenges.”

The meeting also covered important topics like tourism, economic development, improvement of public services, and town improvement in Phuentshogling. Discussions also included issues such as drug cases, timber export, immigration, tourist movement and proposals like introducing pedestrian day and a third gate for heavy vehicles.

Earlier today, the prime minister visited the Phuentshogling Township Development Project, the Regional Immigration Office, the Pedestrian Terminal and the newly constructed Sanglam.

Lyonchen later visited Samtse and met with the officials of the district administration, regional offices and SOEs. Likewise, Lyonchen also visited Samtse town, Royal Bhutan Police’s CCTV control room and various Integrated Check Posts. He also met with the faculty and trainees of Samtse College of Education.

The prime minister will return to Phuentshogling tomorrow.

Passang Dorji, Samtse

Edited by Kipchu

Top Stories

Related Stories


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Recent Comments