The Royal Government of Bhutan adheres strongly to a policy of high value, low impact/volume tourism which serves the purpose of creating an image of exclusivity and high- yield for Bhutan.
“To foster a vibrant industry as a positive force in the conservation of environment, promotion of cultural heritage, safeguarding sovereign status of the Nation for significantly contributing to Gross National Happiness.”
Role of the Tourism Council of Bhutan
The Tourism Council of Bhutan is mandated with the following functions and responsibilities:
i) Tourism Planning & Policy: Formulate, implement and update a national tourism policy and strategy in consultation with relevant stakeholders.
ii) Regulation and Monitoring: Develop and implement relevant tourism guidelines and regulatory measures towards sustainable utilization of natural and cultural resources and ensure compliance.
iii) Facilitation and Co-ordination:
Establish a safe, secure and healthy environment for visitors;
Promote and facilitate private sector investment in the tourism industry;
Promote tourism as an important national priority and mobilize adequate resources for its development;
Co-ordinate tourism related efforts among all stakeholders in the industry;
Facilitate daily operational procedures; and
Facilitate and assist in improving visitor relations and experience.
iv) Marketing and Promotion: Actively carry out/facilitate promotion & marketing of the country as a tourism destination through tourism fairs, exploring potential new markets and promotional literature.
iv) Development of Tourism Products and Services: diversify and develop new tourism products to create a balanced and sustainable tourism industry that is compatible with the environment and society.
v) Human Resource Development: Facilitate the manpower and skills requirements of the tourism sector through training and advancement opportunities.
Tourism being a multidisciplinary sector is often dependent on the initiatives of other sectors for its development. The Department of Tourism was instrumental in the formation of the Association of Bhutanese Tour Operators (ABTO) as a bridge between the private sector and the government.
The Tourism Council of Bhutan has three main divisions and various sections to carry out the functions and responsibilities given below.