This is to notify and inform the general public that the SHORT-TERM WORK PERMIT (E-Work Permit) is now being initiated by the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Employment. The employers wishing to import foreign workers even for the duration less than 30 days should now compulsorily apply online through BLMIS with immediate effect. Besides the normal required documents, the individual/FWRA/employers should submit the medical clearance certificate of the foreigners obtained from the country of origin.This notification is referred to the approval of the night halt work permits only and for other categories and updates, MoICE will keep notifying in future.

Department of Labour

The Department of Labour envisions a decade-long strategy to empower the workforce, ensure equitable labour practices, and foster a safe and conducive work environment. This strategy is founded on the principle of creating a thriving labour ecosystem that safeguards the rights and well-being of workers while promoting sustainable economic growth.

Vision: Fostering National Transformation: Enabling Workforce; Improving Workplace.

Guided by its Vision of “Fostering National Transformation; Enabling Workforce; Improving Workplace,” the Department of Labour is committed to making significant contributions to the nation’s transformation towards ‘Developed Bhutan’. 

This commitment involves advocating and enforcing the Labour and Employment Act with focus on fostering decent employment and workforce development by improving workplace conditions, safeguarding workers’ rights, promoting harmonious work environment and welfare, promoting equity and inclusivity in the workplaces, and improving the management of foreign workers. Additionally, the department’s approach encompasses regular policy reviews, the amendment of regulations, and proactive collaboration with stakeholders, ensuring a dynamic and responsive strategy in advancing Bhutan’s labour administration system.

MissionPromote a fair, inclusive and responsive labour administration system for decent employment and transformative socio-economic growth.

The department plans to realize its mission through a strategic and holistic approach that involves improving labour standards and application, fostering and promoting conducive working conditions for workers, ensuring decent employment practices, enhancing the responsiveness of the labour market, and contributing to transformative socio-economic growth through improved management of the national workforce and foreign workers. These objectives will be pursued through targeted initiatives, strict enforcement of labour laws and regulations, policy implementations, stakeholder collaboration, innovation and technological advancement and continuous adaptability to emerging challenges, ensuring the fulfillment of the department’s mission.

The following are the mandates of DoL: 

  1. Policy Formulation and Implementation: Develop and implement progressive labour policies and regulations that is adaptive to evolving labour market, ensuring balance between economic growth and workers protection.
  2. Enforcement and Compliance: Strictly enforce labour policies, laws and regulations and ensure compliance by employers and employees.
  3. Public Awareness and Education: Promote awareness on rights and duties of employers and employees through campaigns and access to information.
  4. Social Dialogues and Labour relations: Foster open communication and collaboration among employers, employees and government.
  5. Social Protection and Inclusiveness: Initiate and implement activities that promotes equity, diversity and inclusiveness to ensure social wellbeing, worker’s welfare and security.
  6. Management of Foreign Workers: Improve the management of foreign workers including recruitment, deployment and transfer within the country.
  7. Strengthening Occupational Health and Safety: Promote workplace health and safety through effective regulation, education and compliance.
  8. Building Labour Market Information: Data-driven labour market information to improve labour policies, decision making and addressing challenges in the labour market.
  9. Adopting Digital Technology: Leverage and embrace technology to streamline labour administration process and improve public services.
  10. Improving Labour standards: Align labour practices with the international standards to integrate with changing global labour market.
  11. Ensuring Capacity building: Improve the capabilities of the labour staffs to carry out the labour functions through training, adoption of modern tools and professional development.

“WE-CARE: Welfare, Empathy, Collaboration, Accountability, Response, and Equity”

Welfare is the well-being and prosperity of individuals within the labour force. This value emphasizes the department’s commitment to safeguard the financial, mental and physical, well-being of workers. It involves ensuring safe working conditions, fair compensation, and policies that prioritize the overall welfare of both employees and employers.

Empathy involves understanding and showing compassion towards the experiences and challenges faced by individuals in the labour market. The Department values empathy to establish a human-centric approach, addressing concerns with sensitivity, and creating an environment where the voices and needs of workers and employers are heard and understood.

Collaboration is the act of working together with various stakeholders including employers and employees. This value underscores the importance of collective efforts to achieve common goals. The Department fosters collaboration to create a harmonious labour ecosystem, where diverse perspectives contribute to well-informed decisions and effective policies.

Accountability is taking responsibility for actions, decisions, and their consequences. This value ensures that the department remains transparent and trustworthy in its operations. It involves making informed choices, admitting mistakes when they occur, and learning from them to improve processes and maintain public confidence.

Responsiveness is reacting promptly and effectively to the needs and concerns of stakeholders. This value reflects the Department’s dedication to being attentive and adaptable to the ever-changing labour market. Being responsive, the Department can provide timely assistance, address emerging challenges and maintain relevant strategies.

Equity signifies fairness and equal treatment for all individuals while considering their different backgrounds and requirements. The Department upholds this value by advocating for equal opportunities in employment, promoting diversity and inclusion, and addressing systemic inequalities that may exist within the labour market.

Principles guiding the Labour Administration System:

  1. Gainful Employment and Economic Output: The workforce influences economic production. More jobs lead to increased production of goods and services which in turn brings higher economic output and GDP.
  1. Labour Productivity: Labour productivity impacts economic growth. Healthy, skilled and motivated workers enhance productivity, improving economic performance.
  1. Economic Policies and Labour Regulation: Labour Regulations covering minimum wage, working hours, safety standards, etc shape business costs and influence economic choices.
  1. Attraction to FDI: Strong and fair labour laws attract foreign investors due to the appearance of a stable and ethical business environment resulting in higher investments and growth.
  1. Industry and Sector Growth: Labour availability, cost and ease of availing labour will positively shape the growth of different industries and sectors.
  1. Business Reputation: Strong labour regulations contribute to a positive business reputation, attracting partners, creating responsible investors and trading partners.
  1. Healthy Workforce: Regulations ensuring workplace safety and health contribute to a healthier productive workforce, reducing absenteeism and health-related costs for both workers and employers.
  1. Stable Industrial Relations: Clear and balanced labour regulations reduce labour disputes and disruptions, fostering a stable industrial environment that supports economic growth.
  1. Income Distribution: Fair labour laws ensure decent wages and stable economic productivity which in turn boosts disposable income and consumer spending, driving demand for goods and services.
  1. Social Welfare and Stability: A robust labour market with fair labour practices contributes to social inclusion and stability, reducing social tensions and supporting sustainable economic growth.
  1. Reduced Labour Exploitation: Labour laws that can prevent unfair practices such as child labour and forced labour, contribute to a more ethical workforce and a healthier economy.
  1. Improved Worker Well-being: Fair labour laws create better working conditions, enhancing employee morale, job satisfaction, and overall well-being, which positively impact productivity.
  1. Innovation and Technological Progress: A supportive labour environment encourages innovation and adoption of new technologies, driving economic diversification and growth.
  1. Economic Resilience: A well-functioning labour market can contribute to economic resilience during times of crisis by supporting worker adaptation and innovation.
  1. Sustainable Economic Development: Labour laws promoting ethical practices and sustainable working conditions align with responsible economic growth that considers long-term environmental and social impacts.
  1. Entrepreneurial Culture: Labour regulations that provide a supportive framework for businesses can encourage entrepreneurship, enabling new businesses, job creation, and economic growth.
  1. Trade and Globalization: A well-regulated labour market with a skilled workforce enhances a country’s trade competitiveness by ensuring quality and efficiency in production and engagement in global trade.

Labour and the economy are deeply interconnected. The efficiency and effectiveness of labour regulations affects the performance of the labour market, which in turn affects economic growth, consumer behaviour, investment decisions, and overall societal well-being.

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Contact Information

Ministry of Industry, Commerce & Employment
P.O Box #1036, Thongsel Lam
Lower Motithang
Thimphu, Bhutan
PABX : +975-2-328236/324845/333867
Overseas Unit: 02-339531
Employment Service Centre: 02-334495

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Media Focal Person

Mr. Sangay Tenzin
Mobile No: +975-17337221

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