On November 20, 2020 Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi and Bhutan Prime Minister Lotay Tshering jointly e-launched RuPay card Phase-II which will allow Bhutanese card holders to access RuPay network in India.
Through this initiative, Bhutanese people can access around one lakh ATMs (Automated Teller Machines) and 20 Lakh Point-of-Sale terminals (PoS) across India.
i.In August, 2019 Prime Ministers of two countries jointly launched RuPay card Phase-I during Modi’s visit to Bhutan in August, 2019.
ii.Rupay Card Phase-I enabled India’s RuPay card holders to access ATMs and PoS terminals across Bhutan.
iii.Around 11, 000 successful transactions were done by Indians visiting Bhutan through Rupay Card issued by Indian Banks since the start of the initiative. The numbers were substantially low due to Pandemic.
RuPay is the first-of-its-kind Global Card payment network from India, launched by the National Payments Corporation of India on 26th March 2012. It is used widely at ATMs, PoS devices and e-commerce websites.
MoU in Space Sector:
A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between India and Bhutan for cooperation in the space sector to instill the knowledge of space, science and technology in children.
i.PM Modi extended his support for the establishment of an ICT (Information & Communications Technology)-enabled knowledge-based society in Bhutan.
ii.He also welcomed BSNL’s (Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited) agreement with Bhutan regarding the 3rd International Internet Gateway.
iii.India, Bhutan are working rapidly to send Bhutan’s satellite to space with the help of ISRO (Indian Space Research Organisation) in 2021. For this purpose, Bhutan’s four space Engineers will go to ISRO in December, 2020.
Bhutan Broadcasting and Disaster Management:
i.The Ground Earth Station in Thimphu, Bhutan has been put to use for Bhutan Broadcasting and Disaster Management.
ii.In 2019, PM Modi inaugurated a Ground Earth Station in Bhutan at a cost of INR 7 Crores to help Bhutan take advantage of the South Asia Satellite launched by India in 2017.
Recent Related News:
i.On June 3, 2020 The Union cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi approved the Memorandum of Understanding(MoU) between India & Bhutan to improve cooperation in the areas of Environment.
ii.The Bhutan Government and the Kholongchhu Hydro Energy Limited signed the Concession Agreement for 600 MegaWatt (MW) Kholongchhu hydroelectric Project (Joint Venture of India and Bhutan) in Thimphu,
Capital – Thimphu
Currency – Bhutanese Ngultrum (BTN)