Thimphu, 26 December 2022 (TDI): The government of Bhutan, led by the Prime Minister, Lotay Tshering has released press information today, 26 December 2022 to discontinue the duty-free quota in the country.

In the press release, he stated that starting January next year the quota for duty-free goods will be discontinued for those who were entitled so far.

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A total number of 1,226 people were entitled to enjoy this initiative. The initiative enabled those with the quota to buy goods like wine, whisky, cosmetics, and other goods.

Adding that, the decision to discontinue duty-free goods was taken when the cabinet reviewed the policy. After a series of engagements, they arrived that it is not just a hit redundancy but outlived its intended purpose.

History has it that, this policy was introduced in 1989 to allow people get access to consumer goods that originated from advanced countries.

It also allows for the support of sectors of the economy like tourism, the operation of enterprises on a commercial basis, and foreign exchange.

It has then generated quite some revenue but not until it started becoming a challenge instead of a blessing to the country as proposed.

However, over the years, membership had proliferated leading to a loss of revenue and misuse. ย It is estimated that in 2021 108.7 million was forgone in taxes from the policy alone. This is a burden on the economy which is seeking to grow stronger.

The government seeks to take these actions in the best interest of the people of Bhutan as the world is currently facing a severe economic challenge. Adding that, the idea will help them to bring back accountability and transparency.

Meanwhile, the policy, the duty-free quota will be extended to only the diplomats. This will follow the orders and regulations of the constitution of the country.

Bhutan has been trying hard to ensure that the economy of the country is brought to a good position as before the pandemic.