In 1992, Germany was the first European country to recognise the independence of Kyrgyzstan and to open an embassy in Bishkek. Germany is an important partner in consolidating democracy and the rule of law and in transforming the country into a modern economy.
The two countries’ good political relations are based on regular bilateral consultation formats, cooperation at the regional level and in multilateral forums, and high‑level visits in both directions. From 21 to 23 June 2023, Federal President Steinmeier visited Kyrgyzstan, the first European head of state to do so following President Japarov’s assumption of office. On 24 August 2023, Foreign Minister Kulubaev met German Foreign Minister Baerbock in Berlin. On 29 September 2023, at the invitation of the Federal Chancellor, President Japarov travelled to Berlin for a summit with the five Central Asian heads of state and held bilateral talks with the Chancellor.
Historically, German-Kyrgyz relations have been shaped by the German minority in Kyrgyzstan, the numbers of which have, however, fallen from 100,000 when the country was established to around 8200 today. The association of members of the German minority receives financial support from the Federal Government in the social, cultural and education sectors. Germany is active in Kyrgyzstan with a variety of programmes to promote the German language and educational exchange in schools and universities.
Kyrgyzstan is a country with an agricultural economy. Only some of the available raw materials are mined. Gold plays an important role also for the national budget. The economy suffers from a lack of competitiveness. Overall, trade with Germany is low and in the upper double‑digit million range. It is characterised by a large trade surplus in Germany’s favour. Germany’s principal exports to Kyrgyzstan are motor vehicles, machinery and chemical products (pharmaceuticals and cosmetics). Kyrgyzstan’s main exports to Germany are raw materials and food. Overall, there is little investment activity by German companies. Germany and Kyrgyzstan plan to expand cooperation in connection with the training and recruitment of skilled workers.
Bilateral development cooperation between Germany and Kyrgyzstan, which has been in place for many years, will expire in the course of the 2030 reform process of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development. However, Kyrgyzstan is involved in regional technical cooperation projects. Priorities in this regard have included health care and sustainable economic development.
Kyrgyzstan remains an important partner for the German Green Central Asia initiative, the focus of which is on the impact of climate change on regional security in Central Asia. The aim is to foster more intensive regional cooperation, improve the exchange of information and form stronger connections with academia and civil society.