The text of the following statement was released by the Governments of the United States of America and the Kyrgyz Republic on the occasion of United States-Kyrgyz Republic Annual Bilateral Consultations (ABCs) in Washington.
On March 30, 2023, U.S. Department of State Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs Donald Lu and Kyrgyz Republic Deputy Foreign Minister Aibek Moldogaziev led a successful fifth round of United States-Kyrgyz Republic Annual Bilateral Consultations in Washington. The Annual Bilateral Consultations are an opportunity to deepen the U.S.-Kyrgyz partnership by discussing shared perspectives, advancing bilateral goals, and promoting a more prosperous Central Asia.
The United States underscored its commitment to the Kyrgyz Republic’s sovereignty, territorial integrity, and independence. Assistant Secretary Lu highlighted the growing partnership between the two countries, building on Secretary Blinken’s fruitful February-March visit to the region and a bilateral meeting with Foreign Minister of the Kyrgyz Republic Zheenbek Kulubaev.
Political and Security Cooperation
The United States thanked the Kyrgyz Republic for its leadership in regional integration efforts and its upcoming role as annual co-chair of the C5+1 Secretariat beginning in July 2023. The two countries’ representatives also discussed the successful repatriation and reintegration of 59 Kyrgyz citizens from Syria, border security and assistance, and global health security.
The United States welcomed the Kyrgyz Republic’s efforts to delimitate and demarcate its international borders as a central element of peace and security in Central Asia. Meeting participants discussed how the two countries might simplify visa processing and review the validity period of visas for each other’s citizens. They also discussed the possibility of increasing employment opportunities for the citizens of the Kyrgyz Republic, including in the United States.
The United States and the Kyrgyz Republic discussed sanctions coordination and the importance of efforts to reduce the negative impact of international sanctions on the economy of the Kyrgyz Republic. Both sides shared views on further collaboration in advancing information technology and digital industries. They also discussed the ways in which the United States and the Kyrgyz Republic can promote English language programming in the Kyrgyz Republic, including by supporting investments in English language learning and the work of Peace Corps volunteers.
The two delegations welcomed the intensification of trade and economic cooperation, including within the framework of the U.S.-Kyrgyz Business Council. The Kyrgyz delegation noted the importance of helping Kyrgyz banks open correspondent bank accounts with U.S. banks. Participants discussed ways to promote U.S. investment in the Kyrgyz Republic, Kyrgyz exports to the U.S. market, and cooperation in the field of tourism. Additionally, the United States and the Kyrgyz Republic shared perspectives on air quality improvement and clean energy goals.
Media Freedom, Democracy, and the Rule of Law
The United States and the Kyrgyz Republic underscored the importance of a free and diverse media space, a strong and vibrant civil society, and the protection of human rights for all, including efforts to promote women’s empowerment as well as combat gender-based violence, including domestic violence – all of which are cornerstones of a healthy and thriving democracy.
The two delegations additionally discussed further collaboration on combating cybercrime and asset recovery. Participants also discussed the importance of official and non-official visits and exchanges to further bilateral understanding and cooperation.
The United States-Kyrgyz Republic Annual Bilateral Consultations underscore the strength of the bilateral partnership and are an opportunity to identify actionable steps to meet bilateral and regional goals. Assistant Secretary Lu thanked Deputy Foreign Minister Moldogaziev for the Kyrgyz delegation’s participation. Both sides stated their intention to hold the next round of Annual Bilateral Consultations in Bishkek.