Kyrgyzstan’s annual GDP growth stood at 3.5% in 2015, local news website Tazabek.kg reported on January 14, citing the chairman of the Kyrgyz National Statistical Committee, Akylbek Osmonaliyev. Growth was 3.6% in 2014.
The slight deceleration of economic growth can be attributed to the economic slowdown in major trading partners in the region such as Russia, Kazakhstan and China, as well as the decline in the dollar value of remittances that migrants send home. In 2015, the country’s foreign trade fell by 34.5% to $4.3bn in January-November, figures released by the State Customs Service show. At the same time, Kyrgyzstan is one of the world’s most remittance-dependent countries: remittances were equivalent to about one third of GDP in 2014. The remittances fell by 47.3% y/y to $860mn between January and September, according to figures from the Central Bank of Russia.
Despite the challenges in the region the Kyrgyz economy performed better than expected in 2015. Among international observers, both the IMF and the World Bank, forecast the country's growth to slow down to 2% in 2015. Production at the flagship gold mine Kumtor helped shore up economic growth amid the current challenging economic circumstances.
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