A devastating earthquake of 7.8 magnitude struck Nepal on 25 April 2015. The Prime Minister, as Commanded by His Majesty the King, personally traveled to Nepal on 27 April to deliver His Majesty’s message of condolences and donatedUSD 1 million to the Prime Minister of Nepal. Also together in the same flight was the first batch of 63 Earthquake Relief Medical personnel. An additional 15 personnel was sent to Nepal on 5 May 2015.

As the losses of lives and number of casualty in Nepal kept mounting at the aftermath of the earthquake, the Royal Government of Bhutan was inundated with requests from Bhutanese citizens desiring to help with contributions in both cash and kind.The Government therefore established Bhutan4Nepal helpline for people who wanted to make donations for the relief efforts in Nepal.

The Government received as donations a total of Nu. 8,390,682.99.

Agriculture officials discussed feasibility of rice fortification

In order to create better understanding on rice fortification, a team from Bangladesh led by Mr. Md Anyul Kabir, the Joint Secretary for Ministry of Women and Children Affairs were in the country to share their experiences on rice fortification.

Extending a warm welcome to the participants, the Agriculture Secretary, Dasho Tenzin Dhendup said that Bangladeshi experience would be relevant to Bhutan as in both countries, rice is consumed at least three times a day. He shared that in Bhutan, nutritional deficiency has been noticed in some of the schools. ‘We are concerned and serious about improving the general nutritional situation in Bhutan focusing initially on school children,’ Dasho added.

Ministry of Agriculture and Forests presents its mid-term review to Hon’ble Lyonchhen

Led by the Hon’ble Agriculture Minister, Lyonpo Yeshey Dorji, the Ministry of Agriculture and Forests presented its mid-term progress and review (July 2013-June 2015) to the Hon’ble Prime Minister, His Excellency Lyonchhen Tshering Tobgay at the Royal Banquet Hall.

The Ministry’s 11th FYP outlay comprises of a total of Nu. 13.5 billion, with Nu. 4.85 billion as capital outlay and Nu. 8.7 billion as recurrent budget. In terms of financial progress, there has been a cumulative expenditure of Nu. 2,106.398 million against a cumulative revised budget of Nu. 2,913.146 million for two years.

There are six sectoral key result areas (SKRAs) under the Ministry including Food and Nutrition Security, employment opportunities and increase rural household income, accelerate RNR sector growth, enhance sustainable forest, land, water and bio-diversity resource management; enhance conservation of plant and animal genetic resources and enhance effectiveness and efficiency RNR service delivery. Under these, 16 results based programmes were implemented. Accordingly, out of 73 key performance indicators (KPIs), nine have been achieved, 52 were on track and 12 at risk.