Following motor vehicle loan revision by the Royal Monetary Authority (RMA) on August 1, the government said that it would not take fiscal measures to monitor vehicle imports in the country.

After the monetary measure of decreasing the motor vehicle loans from 50 percent of the total cost of vehicle to 30 percent, the government said that the fiscal measures would not be placed as the vehicle congestion remains only in the urban dzongkhags of the country.

Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay said that fiscal measures would mean increasing vehicle import tax that had taken place three years ago. “Because of congestion in Thimphu, we cannot make the whole country pay,” he added.

Prime minister said that the Ministry of Information and Communications has been told to study Thimphu’s vehicle carrying capacity, which would help the government understand the number of new vehicles the capital could accommodate.

“We will then have to come up with a separate system or a mechanism for Thimphu to control traffic,” he said.

In an earlier interview with Kuensel, RMA Governer Dasho Penjore said that the application of the goods and service tax in India would lead to reduction of cost of cars manufactured in India. He added that this would lead to increase in the import of vehicles in Bhutan.

Work and human settlement minister, Lyonpo Dorji Choden, said that the government does not find fiscal measures necessary right now. She added that the government would monitor the situation with the motor vehicle loan revision in place today.

According to statistics from Road Safety and Transport Authority, Thimphu and Phuntsholing has the maximum number of vehicles in the country with 45,622 and 31,218 respectively as of June 30, 2017.

There are 88,227 vehicles in the country.

Phurpa Lhamo