Bhutan Culture of Business

By | July 24, 2022


  • Introduction
  • Addressing
  • Business Meeting
  • Communication
  • Recommendations
  • Public Holidays


Although business ethics are increasingly approaching the standards valid in Europe, Czech entrepreneurs may encounter a number of peculiarities resulting from different cultural and social conditions and business practices.

  • Programingplease: Yearbook 2010 of nation Bhutan, including population, politics, and abbreviations.


Titles are very important and it is best to address partners directly using their professional title or Mr., Mrs. or Miss, followed by their last name. A handshake is common to initiate communication. Personal communication is always more effective than long distance communication methods.

Business meeting

Bhutan is one of the least developed countries in the world, many development programs and projects have a hard time getting off the ground, especially due to the country’s closedness to foreigners and difficulties in establishing direct business contacts. Personal meetings are practically impossible, especially in the first phase of bilateral negotiations. It is possible to act without problems in English, which is mastered by business circles. Seriousness can be expected in personal dealings, Bhutanese are generally very non-confrontational in line with the philosophy of “gross national happiness”. As in other Asian countries, a sense of hierarchy and respect for elders is important in business dealings in Bhutan. Bhutanese consider the answer “no” impolite and always try to answer positively or not at all to save face. Therefore, the conditional tense and the adverb “maybe, maybe” are often used.


Communication can be carried out without problems via telephones or e-mails. Visit Animalerts for more information about Bhutan culture and traditions.


Before closing a deal, Czech companies should check the registration and creditworthiness of their business partners. We recommend using The Austrian Development Agency (ADA) or the honorary consul of Bhutan in the Czech Republic, Jaroslav Hubáček, to check them.

Public Holidays

January 2 – Winter Solstice (Nyilo)

January 14 – Traditional Day of Offerings

February 12 – Dangpa Losar (Lunar New Year)

February 13 – Losar Holiday

February 21 – the anniversary of the birth of the king

February 22 – the anniversary of the birth of the king

February 23 – the anniversary of the birth of the king

April 22 – Zhabdrung Kuchhoe

May 2 – Birthday

3rd King May 26 – Lord Buddha’s Parinirvana

June 20 – Guru Rinpoche’s birth anniversary

July 14 – Feast of the Buddha’s first sermon

September 11 – Thimphu Dromchoe

September 15-17 – Thimphu Tshechu

September 23 – Blessed Rainy Day

October 15 – Dassai

October 27 – Feast of the Descent of the Buddha

November 1 – Druk Gyalpo Coronation Anniversary

November 11 – 4th King’s Birth Anniversary/Constitution Day

December 17 – National Day

Safety and security recommendations:

Before each trip to Bhutan, it is recommended to inform yourself about the current development of the situation in terms of natural phenomena as well as possible security risks. Please note that the Czech Republic does not have an embassy here. The Embassy of the Czech Republic in Delhi is accredited for Bhutan.

Several parts of Bhutan are located on highly active tectonic zones. The lack of vehicles and medical facilities can increase the impact of a possible earthquake in these areas.

Road accidents are one of the biggest causes of injury and even death in Bhutan. Follow the speed limits and make sure you have adequate insurance. Avoid traveling at night. The overall security situation remains unproblematic.

Foreigners are not allowed to enter many areas of Bhutan. Off these routes, there are many interesting temples and monasteries that still fulfill their original function, so access to foreigners is only allowed with a special permit.

In Bhutan, smoking is prohibited in restaurants, transport and other public places. Violation of this prohibition is subject to a fine of 500 Bhutanese ngultrums (approx. 200 CZK).

As part of the consular cooperation of the European Union states, it was agreed that a representative of Austria would provide assistance in Bhutan. In case you run into difficulties, please contact the head of the Austrian Coordination Office of the Austrian Development Agency in Bhutan for assistance: Dr. Thongsel Lam, Lower Motithang, Thimphu, 11001; phone: +975 2 32 44 95,, e-mail:

Sales time:

Stores are usually open from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Working hours:

The working week in Bhutan lasts from Monday to Friday, working from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Banks are open from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. (only until 3:00 p.m. in winter).

Public transport and movement within the country: There is an air connection between Par and several other cities. Before starting your journey, always inform yourself about the current development of the weather over the area to which you are heading. There is no rail network in Bhutan. The road network is very underdeveloped and its quality is poor. The main roads have a paved surface. It is possible to travel by bus or hire a car with a driver.

Insurance and health care:

Travel insurance is required before any trip to Bhutan. Health facilities in Bhutan are located in the larger cities, while the availability of medical care in rural areas is very limited. The treatment is paid on the spot in cash. If you need emergency medical help while traveling, dial 112. The best hospital is the National Referral Hospital in Thimphu.

Employment of citizens from the Czech Republic

Conditions for employment of citizens from the Czech Republic

If the Czech company is not physically represented on the Bhutanese market through an office or a joint venture, the existence of a local representative is a necessary condition for operating on the market. The employment of local forces is necessary for the operation of the representation and is not specifically regulated by law.

However, Bhutan prefers the employment of Bhutanese nationals and allows the employment of foreigners only in justified cases where the local workforce is not sufficiently qualified. The company can deduct the costs of training local workers from the tax base.

In 2018, the Ministry of Labor and Human Resources decided not to issue new or renew existing work permits to foreigners in five categories: carpenters in furniture units, architects, electrical engineers, construction managers and managers or employees in ECCD (Early Childhood Care and Development). This is to facilitate job opportunities and skill development for Bhutanese workers and reduce dependence on foreign workers. There are currently 28 categories in the list of occupations that cannot be performed by foreign workers.

Conditions for the use of local health care by Czech and EU citizens

The Czech Republic does not have any bilateral agreement with Bhutan on the mutual provision of health services. Therefore, it is necessary to have enough cash and to have travel insurance.

Fairs and events

Major events can be found here:

Bhutan Culture of Business