Kyrgystan

Capital:Bishkek
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Kyrgyzstan is a poor, mountainous country with a dominant agricultural sector. Cotton, tobacco, wool, and meat are the main agricultural products, although only tobacco and cotton are exported in any quantity. Industrial exports include gold, mercury, uranium, natural gas, and electricity. The economy depends heavily on gold exports - mainly from output at the Kumtor gold mine. Following independence, Kyrgyzstan was progressive in carrying out market reforms, such as an improved regulatory system and land reform. Kyrgyzstan was the first Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) country to be accepted into the World Trade Organization. Much of the government's stock in enterprises has been sold. Drops in production had been severe after the breakup of the Soviet Union in December 1991, but by mid-1995, production began to recover and exports began to increase. In 2005, the BAKIEV government and international financial institutions initiated a comprehensive medium-term poverty reduction and economic growth strategy. Bishkek agreed to pursue much needed tax reform and, in 2006, became eligible for the heavily indebted poor countries (HIPC) initiative. The government made steady strides in controlling its substantial fiscal deficit, nearly closing the gap between revenues and expenditures in 2006, before boosting expenditures more than 20% in 2007-08. GDP grew about 8% annually in 2007-08, partly due to higher gold prices internationally, but slowed to 2.3% in 2009. The overthrow of President BAKIEV in April, 2010 and subsequent ethnic clashes left hundreds dead and damaged infrastructure. Shrinking trade and agricultural production, as well as political instability, caused GDP to contract about 3.5% in 2010. The fiscal deficit widened to 11% of GDP, reflecting significant increases in crisis-related spending, including both rehabilitation of damaged infrastructure and bank recapitalization. Progress in reconstruction, fighting corruption, restructuring domestic industry, and attracting foreign aid and investment are key to future growth.

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