Blue economy business models for Bhutan

The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will be signed to establish the first ever Gross National Happiness (GNH) fund for implementing innovative business models tailored for the aspiring entrepreneurs and business community in Bhutan.

For this purpose, a select group of inventors, entrepreneurs, financiers and scholars from around the world had a foundation meeting.

The reports on the proposals will be declared along with the financing mechanism and the GNH fund. There will also be a revelation of the portfolios of projects along with the list of foreign partners and the Bhutanese counterparts.

This will be followed by a panel with the government, the GNH Commission, ministries such as the finance, economic affairs, agriculture, labor and human resources, education, health, works and human settlement, information and communication and the Royal Monetary Authority.

The seminar on technology and innovative business models had 12 companies submitting their proposals in the presence of the private entrepreneurs and foreign companies.

Bio diversity Clarins, a leading French cosmetic company, stated that it had been inspired by the Bhutanese floral kingdom and proposed a detailed cooperation in assisting Bhutan in the area with its expertise.

Other presentations were made on cruelty-free silk, regenerating forests, agricultural and bio waste, bio-refineries and bio-plastics. Wind energy, free internet, clean soap and natural detergents were also on the agenda.

Dawa Dakpa, proprietor of Shoevival, a small private enterprise, said that the meeting had been fruitful for him in terms of knowledge and experience and now he hopes that there would be investors coming forward to collaborate with his project.

The media focal person of Druk Holdings and Investment (DHI), Chimi Zangmo, said that a solid decision can be reached upon only after discussion with the private entrepreneurs and the collaborating partners.

Gunter Pauli, initiator of the Blue Economy, said the innovative models presented was not new to the world but it was to Bhutan. “We are all here to help but now it is up to Bhutan to decide and we need to know their priorities,” he said.

Following the presentation, the foreign participants had a discussion on the feedback with the Bhutanese counterparts.

This event aims at creating a platform for the local business communities on how to evolve from the vision of GNH to economic development based on innovative business models that work with what is locally available.
The DHI in collaboration with the Gross National Happiness Commission (GNH) and the Blue Economy Innovations organized the event. The foundation meeting for the first ever GNH fund commenced from June 20, 2011 and concluded today.

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