ADB Visit Reconfirms Commitment to Future of Kyrgyz Republic

BISHKEK, KYRGYZ REPUBLIC – Asian Development Bank (ADB) Vice President Xiaoyu Zhao wrapped up a two-day visit to the Kyrgyz Republic today after several consultations with government officials on long-term development goals, short-term issues facing the country, and the role of ADB in the economic development of the country.

“The Kyrgyz Republic has shown faster than expected economic recovery after the political events of 2010,” Zhao said. “Political stability is a prerequisite to any economic growth, and inclusive growth helps maintain stability. ADB would like to support the Kyrgyz Republic’s long-term strategy and help the country achieve growth that also reaches the poor, the vulnerable and the geographically isolated.”

He stressed the active role the Kyrgyz Republic plays in regional economic development and the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) program.

“While the majority of investment under the CAREC program went to building regional corridors, trade and energy sectors are increasingly important. We should also collectively explore measures to increase the economic value of existing regional corridors,” Zhao said.

In a meeting with newly-elected President Almazbek Atambayev, Zhao offered his congratulations for achieving the peaceful transfer of presidential power. He assured the country’s leader that ADB is ready to support the Kyrgyz Republic in achieving its development goals.

Zhao and Prime Minister Omurbek Babanov exchanged views and ideas on priorities for the Kyrgyz Republic to achieve medium- to long-term economic growth at a separate meeting.

Zhao also met with the Speaker of the Parliament, Minister of Finance, Minister of Economy and Antimonopoly Policy, Minister of Transport and Communications, and Minister of Energy and Industry, where he discussed sector issues and the role of ADB in their development.

ADB began its operations in the Kyrgyz Republic in 1994 and established the Kyrgyz Resident Mission in April 2000. ADB has been among the largest development partners for the Kyrgyz Republic, providing 32 Asian Development Fund (ADF) loans and 14 ADF grants for a total amount of more than $1 billion equivalent. The country has also received 75 Technical Assistance grants amounting to $42.9 million, as well as received seven grants from the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction (JFPR) amounting to $7 million. ADB is the largest funding agency in the transport, education, and financial sectors.

ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth and regional integration. Established in 1966, it is owned by 67 members -- 48 from the region.