Bilateral cooperation between the Kyrgyz Republic and the Swiss Confederation
Switzerland recognized the independence of the Kyrgyz Republic on December 23, 1991. Kyrgyz-Swiss diplomatic relations were established on February 14, 1992. On February 14, 2017, Kyrgyzstan and Switzerland celebrated the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations. In honour of this event the Heads of States and Heads of Foreign Ministries of the two countries exchanged congratulatory messages between each other.
The active phase of cooperation between Kyrgyzstan and Switzerland began in 1993 after the accession of the Kyrgyz Republic to the Swiss-led electoral group at the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank (Bretton Woods Institutions). On November 14, 1994, the two governments signed an agreement on technical cooperation, and in 1996 the office of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation was opened in Bishkek. Subsequently, the Government of Switzerland decided to establish the Embassy in Kyrgyzstan, which officially opened on November 5, 2012. The Embassy of Kyrgyzstan in Switzerland/Permanent Mission to the United Nations Office and other international organizations in Geneva was opened in 1996.
Bilateral relations between Kyrgyzstan and Switzerland are characterized by stability and positive dynamics. Today, Switzerland is one of the main donors of Kyrgyzstan. The total volume of assistance provided by the Swiss side to Kyrgyzstan since independence has exceeded 370 million Swiss francs (386 million US dollars). As of today, technical cooperation remains one of the most developed areas of Kyrgyz-Swiss relations. Within the framework of the Strategy for Cooperation between Switzerland and the Central Asian Countries for 2017-2020, more than thirty projects in the fields of health, employment and economic development, public sector reform, water, infrastructure and climate change are being implemented in the Kyrgyz Republic. For the entire four-year period of the Strategy, the amount of assistance equals to 90.5 million Swiss francs (94.5 million US dollars). Kyrgyzstan and Switzerland also work together to strengthen parliamentary democracy, improve the electoral system, develop arts and culture in the Kyrgyz Republic, and jointly implement project proposals aimed at combating poverty, protecting human rights and development at the local level.
In accordance with the bilateral agreement on trade and economic cooperation of 10 May 1997, a joint commission on trade and economic cooperation between Kyrgyzstan and Switzerland was established. The first meeting of the Commission was held on April 4, 2001, in Bern. On May 29, 2008, the second meeting of the Commission was held in Bishkek. The third meeting was held in Zurich on September 25, 2012. The fourth meeting was held in Bishkek on June 3, 2016. The two countries also hold regular political consultations at the level of deputy foreign ministers. The last consultations took place on May 2, 2018 in Bern.
In recent years, the two countries have exchanged the following visits on high levels:
1) The working visit of the Swiss President H.E. Mr. Didier Burkhalter to the Kyrgyz Republic on November 22, 2014.
2) The official visit of the Kyrgyz President H.E. Mr. Almazbek Atambayev to Switzerland on March 26, 2015.
3) The official visit of the Speaker of the Kyrgyz Parliament (Jogorku Kenesh) H.E. Mr. Chynybai Tursunbekov to Switzerland on June 6-9, 2016.
4) The visit of the Kyrgyz Prime Minister H.E. Mr. Sapar Isakov to participate at the 48th session of the World Economic Forum in Davos from 22 to 25 January 2018.
In addition, regular exchanges of visits are held between the two countries at the levels of heads of ministries, departments, state committees and agencies. Inter-parliamentary cooperation is also one of the important parts of bilateral relations between Kyrgyzstan and Switzerland. The parties periodically exchange visits of parliamentary delegations. There are Kyrgyz-Swiss parliamentary friendship groups both in the Jogorku Kenesh of the Kyrgyz Republic and the National Council (the lower house of parliament) of Switzerland.
The annual trade turnover between the two countries is estimated about 650-700 million US dollars. Kyrgyzstan mainly exports to Switzerland precious metals (gold and silver), and imports pharmaceutical products, some types of equipment and machines, watches and electronics. According to the data from the National Statistics Committee of the Kyrgyz Republic, Switzerland's direct investments to Kyrgyzstan in 2017 were about $ 2 million.
Between September 25-29, 2017, the first ever trip of the Swiss group of businessmen to Kyrgyzstan was organized with the aim to develop economic and business ties between the two countries. During the visit the bilateral meetings with representatives of state bodies of the Kyrgyz Republic, numerous business meetings, presentations and events were organized for businessmen in order to attract their maximum attention to the country's economy. A similar trip of Swiss businessmen and entrepreneurs is planned for 5-9 September 2018.
As of today 36 international treaties and project agreements have been signed between the Kyrgyz Republic and Switzerland.
Kyrgyzstan and Switzerland are still members of the Swiss-led election groups in such institutions as the World Bank, International Monetary Fund and the Global Environment Facility.
Bilateral cooperation between the Kyrgyz Republic and the Principality of Liechtenstein
Diplomatic relations between the Kyrgyz Republic and the Principality of Liechtenstein were established on September 16, 1999.
Currently, the cooperation between the two countries is not of dynamically growing nature and in most cases is limited to interaction within the framework of international organizations and mutual legal assistance.
As part of the "development assistance" policy, Liechtenstein, until 2014, participated in the implementation of Swiss projects in Kyrgyzstan in the fields of health, tourism and education in rural areas. During the period of cooperation between the two countries the volume of Liechtenstein's assistance to the Kyrgyz Republic amounted to about 4 million US dollars. However, due to the reduction in the international aid budget, in 2011 Liechtenstein adopted a program for the gradual deactivation of project activities in a number of countries, including Kyrgyzstan. As of today, the Kyrgyz Republic is doing some work on the possible resumption of the activities of the Liechtenstein Development Agency.
The two countries continue their efforts on developing the political dialogue and boosting trade and economic relations.