Tourist arrivals dropped by 15 percent in 2009 from the year before, prompting people in the industry to call it one of the worst slumps in recent years. Arrivals fell to 23,480 in 2009, compared to 27,636 tourists in 2008, a decrease of 4,156 tourists.
Paro Tshechu, which always attracted large crowds of tourists from all over the world saw a low turnout this year.
With the Bhutanese handicraft generating a lot of revenue besides maintaining the country’s unique culture and tradition, the need for an electronic payment network, managing payments among financial institutions, merchants, consumers, businesses and government entities is rising.
With the global economic recession showing no signs of slowing down and countries like USA and Japan worst hit, the Bhutanese tourism industry has seen its tourist arrivals drop by more than 30 percent in just under a year.