In 1992, Germany was the first European country to recognise the independence of Kyrgyzstan and to establish an embassy in Bishkek. Today, Kyrgyzstan considers Germany to be 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. Kyrgyz President Sooronbay Jeenbekov last paid a state visit to Berlin on 16 April 2019.
Historically, the German minority in Kyrgyzstan figures prominently in German-Kyrgyz relations. The approximately 8000 ethnic Germans still remaining in the country today are supported financially by the Federal Government as well as in the social, cultural and education sectors. Beyond this minority, 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 relatively few raw materials and an agricultural economy. Its economy suffers from a lack of competitiveness. Overall, trade with Germany is low and mostly 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 agricultural products. Overall, there is little investment activity by German companies.
Germany’s development cooperation with Kyrgyzstan is the most important component of bilateral relations. Priorities in this regard include health care and sustainable economic development.
Germany is one of the country’s principal bilateral donors. In addition, Germany is an important contributor to the programmes of multilateral institutions such as the European Union, the United Nations and major development banks.