Bhutan and India form group to monitor hydropower projects; SSB lifts trade restrictions on people from Samtse; Danish government commits Nu 2,925 million to Bhutan for the 10th five year plan
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  • Bhutan and India renewed their commitment signed in 2006 to help Bhutan achieve its goal of producing 10,000 mw of hydropower by 2020. A joint group was constituted to track the implementation of hydropower projects between two countries1.

    The Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) has meanwhile lifted trade restrictions imposed on the people of four gewogs (blocks, consisting of a group of villages) in Samtse bordering India. People from Samtse were earlier restricted from trading their agricultural produce in markets inside India for security considerations2. In a related development, militants coming from across the Nepalese border mounted an attack in Gelephu. Twenty- six empty cartridges of Ak-47 were recovered from the spot3.

    In other developments, the Danish government has committed Nu 2,925 million to Bhutan for the 10th five year plan, out of which Nu 585 million will be given annually. The assistance will be spread over sectors like health, education, good governance, environment and urban development. Denmark is Bhutan’s second largest bilateral development partner4. Reports also noted that Bhutan experienced a sheer drop in tourist arrivals by almost 30 percent due to the global financial meltdown5.