H.E. Mr. Chenkyab Dorji
Secretary General of SAARC
Born in 1943 in Haa district
of western Bhutan, H.E. Mr. Chenkyab Dorji graduated in Forestry from
Dehra Dun, India in 1963. He then completed his Masters in Forestry Science
from Forestry Research Institute, Dehra Dun in 1967. Subsequently, he
had undertaken trainings at various world-renowned institutions including,
the Swiss Technical Institute in Zurich, Switzerland, and the Wood Technology
and Transport in Austria.
Mr. Dorji joined the civil service of Bhutan in 1961
in the Department of Forests and later served as Director until 1984.
From 1983 to 1985 he served as Director of the Board of International
Center for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), which is located
in Kathmandu, Nepal.
In 1984, he was appointed as the Joint Secretary of the
Department of Trade, Commerce, and Industry and Mines of Bhutan. A year
later he was promoted as the Secretary of the Ministry of Trade, Industries
and Forests. In 1986, he served both as the Secretary, National Planning
Commission and Secretary, Department of Agriculture.
He held the office of the Vice-chairman and Deputy Minister
of Planning Commission (independent charge) during the period of 1988-1991.
He was then elevated to the post of Cabinet Minster for Planning and served
as its Chairman from 1991 through 1998. He also served as Chairman of
the National Environment Commission from 1992 to 1998. During his Chairmanship
of above Commissions, two key documents were prepared and published i.e.
Bhutan 2020 – A vision for peace, prosperity and happiness 1996,
and the Middle Path – National Environment Strategy for Bhutan.
Mr. Dorji also served as Member of several key institutions
of Royal Government of Bhutan. He was conferred a number of awards in
recognition of his outstanding contributions during his career.
Prior to joining the SAARC Secretariat, Mr. Dorji served
as Bhutan’s first resident Ambassador to Thailand at the Royal Bhutanese
Embassy in Bangkok. He was concurrently accredited as Ambassador to Singapore,
Australia and was also responsible for Bhutan’s relations with other
South East Asian Countries.
Mr. Dorji has to his credit two titles published i.e.
The National Forest Policy (1974), and The Bhutan Forest Act (1969).
As per the SAARC Charter, the Secretary General is appointed
upon nomination from Member States in alphabetical order for a period
of three years. The current Secretary General, who took office on 1st
March 2005, is the eighth occupant of the high office of the Association.
Mr. Dorji is the first Secretary General of SAARC who
comes from Bhutan. It may be added that during the first cycle, Bhutan
did not nominate a dignitary for the same position.