The Government of Bhutan is closely monitoring the coronavirus pandemic and while 70 cases have been confirmed in Bhutan, all were imported and no deaths have been reported. While the health impact has so far been limited in Bhutan as compared to many other countries, the economic and social effects will be significant. The health sector would be challenged to cope with a major outbreak while an extended period of limited movement of people, goods, and capital will have important consequences for the economy, especially the tourism sector and related service industries. Bhutan is also likely to be negatively affected by any extended economic downturn in its neighbors (especially India).
The UN in Bhutan moved quickly and pro-actively to respond to COVID-19. In particular, UN agencies developed a joint response framework aligned with global guidance. Bhutan’s “UN Framework for the Socio-Economic Response to COVID-19” (also known locally as the “Shield”) includes both short-term measures to mitigate negative social and economic consequences along with medium- to long-term investments to strengthen the re-build and resilience to future crises.
For more information, please download the sitrep from UN Bhutan COVID-19 sitrep #2 – June
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