The Political System

The Political System of Bhutan

The official name of the country is Druk Yul (The Land of the Dragon). Internationally, however, it is known as the Kingdom of Bhutan. Its data code is bt.


Bhutan is an hereditary monarchy. Since 1972, the fourth king, Jigme Singye Wangchuck, reigns. He is the head of state, but as of recently, no longer the head of government.


The capital of Bhutan is Thimphu with roughly 35.000 inhabitants. The country is divided into 18 administrative districts: Bumthang, Chhukha, Chirang, Daga, Geylegphug, Ha, Lhuntshi, Mongar, Paro, Pemagatsel, Punakha, Samchi, Samdrup Jongkhar, Shemgang, Tashigang, Thimphu, Tongsa and Wangdi Phodrang.


In 1949, Bhutan entered into a friendly relations agreement, as well as an agreement concerning economic support with independent India. Since then it enjoys a close relationship with its southern neighbor. The national holiday is December 17 - on December 17, in 1907, Ugyen Wangchuck was crowned the first King of Bhutan.


Bhutan has no written constitution. The legislative body is the national assembly with 150 members. The basis for the legal system is the Indian Law and the British Common Law. The executive body consists of the king and the committees which are appointed by him: the Royal Advisory Council and the Council of Ministers. There are no political parties.

Bhutan knows no individual right of vote. On the communal level, each household has one vote. 105 of totally 150 members of the national assembly are elected in a three-year cycle by the village communities.

The king is both the supreme judge and in charge of the highest court of appeal. The judges of the high court are personally appointed by him. Bhutan has not accepted nor acknowledged the jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice.


During the reign of Jigme Dorje Wangchuck Bhutan became a member of the United Nations. Further this country belongs to the following international organisations: AsDB, CP, ESCAP, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, IDA, IFAD, IMF, Intelsat, IOC, ITU, NAM, SAARC, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WHO and WIPO.

The Political System
The Economy of Bhutan
The Population

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