Today, the European Union and Kyrgyz Republic reaffirmed their strong cooperation on digital development during the Global Gateway Forum in Brussel. The EU has showcased a commitment to strengthening the digital development of the Kyrgyz Republic and its ambition to become a digital pioneer in Central Asia. Through policy dialogue, budget support and capacity building measures, the EU has been assisting with the implementation of the Kyrgyz Government’s Concept ‘Digital Kyrgyzstan’ and the related Kyrgyz Digital Transformation Roadmap 2019-2023 and intends to continue this strand of cooperation going forward.
The first Budget Support programme on digitalisation in all of Asia was adopted in the Kyrgyz Republic in 2020. Until now, this programme has a disbursement rate of 100%, proving the mutual commitment to jointly agreed targets and the importance given to this area. This programme falls under the Governance and Digital Transformation priority of the EU Multiannual Indicative Programme 2021-2027 for the Kyrgyz Republic and supports various aspects of digital development including provision of state e-services, development of digital skills, and enhancement of cybersecurity and personal data protection.
A further disbursement under this programme is scheduled before the end of 2023, provided all applicable targets are reached. In addition to direct disbursements, this programme also consists of capacity building measures, including a Twinning component through which representatives of the public administrations of EU Member States (Estonia, Finland and Italy) were embedded in relevant departments of the Kyrgyz Government. The Twinning action concluded successfully in 2023.
The bilateral support to the Kyrgyz Republic is part of the regional Team Europe Initiative on Digital Connectivity in Central Asia, a flagship initiative of the Global Gateway. A regional action, focusing on soft measures and supporting an enabling environment for connectivity, has been adopted by the European Commission in September 2023 with the launch of the activities foreseen in the first half of 2024. This will be accompanied by further action to be adopted in early 2024 for the construction of digital connectivity infrastructure throughout Central Asia, including in the Kyrgyz Republic.
European Commission Vice President, Věra Jourová, said:
" Digital connectivity is a priority under Global Gateway. Through our innovative cooperation on digitalisation, the EU is supporting the Kyrgyz Republic towards becoming a digital champion in Central Asia. The EU remains dedicated to working closely with our Kyrgyz partners and fellow European nations to achieve these important goals."
The Minister of Digital Development of Kyrgyzstan Nuriya Kutnaeva said:
"Through their cooperation in the field of digital development the EU and the Kyrgyz Republic are demonstrating their mutual trust and shared values. In the field of digitalisation in particular, the 100% disbursement rate of the EU Budget Support programme demonstrates that the Kyrgyz Republic is keeping true to its commitment to its own people and to development partners to work tirelessly towards this objective. We are glad to continue partnering with the EU in this sector, and look forward to the implementation of further bilateral and regional programmes."
European Commissioner for International Partnerships, Jutta Urpilainen, said:
"Our collaboration on digitalisation exemplifies our shared commitment to drive the Kyrgyz Republic towards becoming a digital pioneer in Central Asia. The success of our joint initiatives showcases our dedication to mutually agreed targets and the significance of this endeavour. We stand united in our efforts to shape a brighter digital future for the Kyrgyz Republic and Central Asia as a whole."
The Global Gateway Forum brings together an assembly of government representatives from the European Union and across the globe, alongside key stakeholders from the private sector, civil society, thought leaders, financial institutions, and international organisations to promote global investment in infrastructure.
During this landmark occasion, a series of strategic investment announcements and agreements with partner countries are being presented, marking a significant leap towards the implementation of the Global Gateway strategy. These announcements not only underscore the tangible worldwide impact of Global Gateway but also provide a platform for governments and businesses to engage in critical discussions surrounding its priorities.
The Global Gateway Forum highlights a collective commitment to fostering sustainable growth and resilience worldwide through a Team Europe approach.
Global Gateway represents the European Union's effort reduce the worldwide investment disparity and boost smart, clean and secure connections in digital, energy and transport sectors, and to strengthen health, education and research systems. It provides sustainable investment opportunities to enhance the prosperity and security of our global partners and Europe alike.
The Global Gateway strategy embodies a collaborative approach that brings together the European Union, EU Member States, and European development finance institutions. Together, we aim to mobilize up to €300 billion in public and private investments from 2021 to 2027, creating essential links rather than dependencies, and closing the global investment gap.
Team Europe stands out with a compelling proposition for democratic partner nations, focusing on sustainability across social, environmental, and financial aspects, promoting long-term drivers of growth through a comprehensive 360-degree approach, encompassing both hard and soft infrastructure, and reinforcing the resilience of nations seeking strategic autonomy.
- Publication date
- 26 October 2023
- Directorate-General for International Partnerships