Tajikistan to Improve Investment Climate via ADB, Japan Support

DUSHANBE, TAJIKISTAN – Improving the investment climate in Tajikistan, supporting knowledge transfer to businesses, and attracting potential investors to the country are at the heart of new technical assistance by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of Japan.

The Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction (JFPR) is providing a $1 million grant to be managed by ADB for the Investment Climate Reforms project, which is scheduled to run for three years through 2016.

“We expect this project to broaden the base of private entrepreneurs and investors who wish to set up and expand their businesses in Tajikistan, and produce more and higher-value products and services,” said Ruben Barreto, Financial Sector Specialist at ADB’s Central and West Asia Department.

The project will advise the government on reforms that can mitigate investors’ risks, help productive enterprises expand, and attract investments. The One Village One Product approach will be piloted to support expansion of product development and quality certification, with the support of Japanese volunteers.

The project will also help the Tajik investment promotion agency develop investment promotion materials, upgrade its website, and train staff in image building and investor servicing.

A pilot business incubator for women entrepreneurs will be established to train women entrepreneurs throughout the country. A competition among women entrepreneurs on innovative business proposals will select promising candidates for mini-Master of Business Administration courses.

The Executive Office of the President is the executing agency for the project. Implementing agencies are the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade, State Investment and State Property Management Committee, and National Association of Business Women in Tajikistan, each responsible for different sets of measures.

Tajikistan joined ADB in 1998 and, to date, the institution has approved total assistance of over $1.2 billion in concessional loans, grants, and technical assistance to the country. The 15 years of ADB-Tajikistan partnership has promoted social development, restored and built new infrastructure, expanded agricultural production, and encouraged regional cooperation and trade within the framework of the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation Program.