BISHKEK, KYRGYZ REPUBLIC (27 September 2019) — The Kyrgyz Republic is poised to achieve faster and more inclusive growth over the next decade as the government implements reforms that promote economic diversification, good governance, private sector participation, integration of technology in key economic sectors, and better social protection, says a new Asian Development Bank (ADB) Country Diagnostic Study released today.
The study, Kyrgyz Republic: Improving Growth Potential, presents an in-depth analysis of key sectors where comprehensive reforms can make a difference and examines how the country can build on economic accomplishments of the last few years to ensure strong, broad-based economic growth.
Sectors with high growth potential include trade, agriculture, tourism and finance, information and communications technology, energy, transport and logistics, and human capital.
“Our country diagnostic studies provide medium- to long-term economic policy recommendations for sustainable and inclusive growth,” said ADB Vice-President for Knowledge Management and Sustainable Development Mr. Bambang Susantono, who welcomed participants to the workshop launching the study. “ADB is committed to supporting our member countries through knowledge solutions.”
“The Kyrgyz Republic is at a unique point in its growth and development story,” said ADB Country Director for the Kyrgyz Republic Ms. Candice McDeigan. “Reforms to strengthen education, trade, tourism, and the business climate through collaboration will set the country firmly on the path to long-term economic growth.”
The Kyrgyz Republic has living standards and social indicators that far outpace levels seen after the country’s independence in the 1990s. Nevertheless, one-sixth of the country’s 6-million-strong population work overseas, only a quarter of adults have a bank account, and transport and internet connectivity is weak.
Diversifying exports and markets would spur growth and reduce economic volatility. More investment into road, rail, and air connections could make the Kyrgyz Republic more attractive to foreign and domestic businesses. Higher electricity tariffs may be advisable to fund better energy services. Implementing digital technologies and improved governance efforts could also boost operational effectiveness, the study said.
The Kyrgyz Republic joined ADB in 1994 and the bank has since approved 44 loans ($1.2 billion) and 40 grants ($662 million) from the Asian Development Fund as well as 6 grants ($7.5 million) from Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction. ADB has also financed 104 technical assistance projects ($60.2 million).
ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. In 2018, it made commitments of new loans and grants amounting to $21.6 billion. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members—49 from the region.