Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic, September 27, 2019—The World Bank Group is helping the Kyrgyz Republic develop a national strategy that will make it easier for individuals and smaller businesses to access financial services, part of a larger effort to create jobs and stoke economic growth in the country.
Over the course of the next year, IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, will provide technical assistance to the National Bank of the Kyrgyz Republic, helping it carry out an extensive, evidence-based consultation process that will result in a national financial inclusion strategy. The process will include discussions with the National Bank, ministries and governmental bodies, businesses, academics, as well as civil society organizations. In the Kyrgyz Republic, where just 40 percent of adults have an account at a formal financial institution and even fewer borrow from traditional lenders, expanding access to credit, savings accounts, and other financial services is a major priority.
“Better access to finance can lead to inclusive growth, improved competitiveness, and an export-oriented economy. That is why promoting financial inclusion is expected to have a positive impact on the country’s economy,” said Tolkunbek Abdygulov, Chairman of the National Bank of Kyrgyz Republic.
The consultation process, officially launched on September 26 during a ceremony in Bishkek, is part of a larger push by IFC to support the development of the private sector in the Kyrgyz Republic.
"Private businesses are the backbone of most economies around the world," said Manizha Mamadnabieva, IFC country officer for the Kyrgyz Republic. "By expanding their access to formal financial services, we can help them expand, which will create jobs, fight poverty, and lay the foundation for sustainable growth."
The Kyrgyz Republic is one of 60 countries that have either launched or are developing a national strategy for financial inclusion. IFC's Central Asia Financial Inclusion Project will be supporting the strategy in partnership with the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs of Switzerland SECO.
Supporting responsible and inclusive financial services is an important part of IFC’s strategy in Europe and Central Asia. IFC has worked to help businesses and individuals harness the benefits of financial services, focusing on payments, lending, and other financial services.
SECO is Switzerland’s competence center for all core issues relating to economic policy. SECO’s economic development cooperation strives to achieve inclusive sustainable growth and poverty reduction. Its activities aim to create more and better jobs, to enhance trade and competitiveness, to support effective institutions and services and to foster climate resilient economies. For more information, visit www.seco-cooperation.ch
About the World Bank Group
The World Bank Group is one of the world's largest sources of funding and knowledge for developing countries. It comprises five closely associated institutions: the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA), which together form the World Bank; the International Finance Corporation (IFC); the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA); and the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). Each institution plays a distinct role in the mission to fight poverty and improve living standards for people in the developing world. For more information, please visit www.worldbank.org, www.miga.org, and www.ifc.org.