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US aid for Kyrgyz apparel segment to boost exports

The United States has been working with Kyrgyz apparel manufacturers since 2014 to optimise production and marketing in order to tap into multi-billion dollar export markets by targeting major retail chains and branded stores in Europe and CIS.

The initiative, called USAID, hosted a business-to-business presentation of the production capabilities of the Kyrgyz apparel industry for foreign retailers. The retail buyers were highly impressed by the magnitude of apparel manufacturing in the Kyrgyz Republic, and by the advantages in flexible product development, lower logistics costs, and dramatically shorter lead times that Kyrgyz manufacturers have compared to many international competitors.

As a result of this meeting, Kyrgyz producers immediately signed and fulfilled contracts to export more than a million dollars in clothing, primarily men’s suits. With USAID support, 22 leading manufacturers in the Kyrgyz Republic that employ over 1,700 workers have joined the initiative to share best practices and improve their operations and marketing efforts. After expanding sales to current markets, the project will focus on exports to the European Union and the United States.

USAID is a four-year project that works with individual firms and stakeholders in the garment, tourism, and construction industries to improve productivity, access to markets, and management capacity to boost competitiveness in both domestic and international markets.