ADB supports reforms aimed at diversifying Kyrgyzstan’s economy

BISHKEK (TCA) — The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a $50 million policy-based grant for the first subprogram of the Promoting Economic Diversification Program, which supports the Government of Kyrgyzstan’s efforts to diversify the economy through reforms aimed at improving the country’s trade and investment competitiveness, small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) development, public–private partnerships, and the link between skills development and industry needs, the ADB country office in Kyrgyzstan said on September 17.

“The Kyrgyz Republic has the potential to achieve economic growth that is more sustainable, broad-based, and inclusive, but this is only possible if it maintains efforts to implement critical structural reforms that will help the economy transition to a more dynamic and globally oriented market economy,” said the Director of Public Management, Financial Sector, and Trade for ADB’s Central and West Asia Department Mr. Tariq Niazi. “ADB’s assistance will help the government to gradually reduce the economy’s reliance on gold extraction and remittances and strengthen the foundation for the creation of new businesses and jobs for the people of the Kyrgyz Republic.”

The Promoting Economic Diversification Program, which comprises two subprograms of $50 million each in 2019 and 2021, will support the government’s efforts to implement four high priority reform areas from the country’s National Development Strategy, 2018–2040: (1) trade and investment competitiveness reforms to develop the non-mineral sector and diversify exports and investments; (2) SME development reforms to broaden the economic base and promote entrepreneurship; (3) public–private partnership reforms to develop the country’s social and economic infrastructure; and (4) industry-linked skills development and training reforms to better equip graduates and workers to meet labor market needs.

ADB has been helping the government implement its economic diversification reforms since 2007. “Despite many challenges, including macroeconomic shocks and political crises that have slowed reform implementation, ADB’s annual country performance assessments demonstrate that the Kyrgyz Republic has made solid progress in improving the quality of its policies and institutions,” said ADB Country Director for the Kyrgyz Republic Ms. Candice McDeigan. “ADB’s strong partnership with the government will help efforts to progressively tackle more complex and challenging reforms in the future.”

Sergey Kwan