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National Council (NC) ratifies two International Agreements

Posted on :12 May 2017

In the morning session, the NC unanimously ratified the Paris Agreement and the Trade, Commerce and Transit between the Royal Government of Bhutan and Government of Republic of India. 
As per the procedure, the Paris Agreement, was presented by the Minister of Agriculture and Forest covering an overview of the Final National Interest Analysis which outlines the benefit, obligations , implementation, comparison from Kyoto Protocol and cost implication as a signatory country to the agreement. Further, reinforcing the national contribution and continued leadership in climate action, he said that Bhutan is highly vulnerable to the adverse impacts of climate due to fragile mountainous landscape and high dependence of the economic and population on climate sensitive sectors of agriculture, water and hydropower. 
Concerns were raised by members to clarify the impact of failure to sign the Agreement within the timeline, formulation and implementation of low emission development strategy, forest inventory to understand sink capacity and current status of Clean Development Mechanism amongst others. 
 Subsequently, the Minister of Economic Affairs introduced the Trade, Commerce and Transit between Kingdom of Bhutan and Government of India. A brief highlight was provided on the background, salient feature, amendments/new insertions in renewed agreement, expected benefit and outcome. Providing rational for ratifying the agreement, the minister stated that the Free Trade Agreement is being benefitted immensely by both the countries. The most important feature of the agreement is the provision on free trade between the two countries amongst other. 
Clarifying on the queries raised by the members, the Ministry explained on the issues related to the five exits and entry points, financial memorandum and impact on trade by delaying the ratification of the agreement. 
 In the afternoon, the House continued the deliberation on the Audit Bill of Bhutan 2017 and directed the Committee to re-visit the provisions which the House could not reach consensus for final adoption.

On Monday, the Economic Affairs Committee will present the Tax Audit Report on Tour Operators to the House.

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