Kyrgyzstan’s Top 10 Exports

Kyrgyzstani flag


Also known as Kirghizia or the Kyrgyz Republic, Kyrgyzstan shipped US$1.7 billion worth of goods around the globe in 2018. That dollar amount reflects a -10.3% decrease since 2014 and a -5.6% dip from 2017 to 2018.

Kyrgyzstan is a landlocked Central Asian nation surrounded by the much larger Kazakhstan to its north, China to its east, Uzbekistan to its west and southwest, and Tajikistan to its southwest.

The latest data shows that 93.5% of products exported from Kyrgyzstan were bought by importers in: United Kingdom (39.6% of the global total), Russia (16.1%), Kazakhstan (13%), Uzbekistan (9.4%), Turkey (6.2%), China (3.6%), Tajikistan (2.8%) and Lithuania (2.7%).

From a continental perspective, 62.4% of Kyrgyzstani exports by value were delivered to European countries while 37.4% were sold to importers in Asia. Kyrgyzstan shipped much smaller percentages to other continents (North America, Africa, Oceania led by Australia, Latin America).

Given Kyrgyzstan’s population of 5.8 million people, its total $1.7 billion in 2018 exports translates to roughly $290 for every resident in the Central Asian country.

In macroeconomic terms, Kyrgyzstan’s total exported goods represent 6.9% of its overall Gross Domestic Product for 2018 ($24.5 billion valued in Purchasing Power Parity US dollars). That 6.9% for exports to overall GDP in PPP for 2018 compares to 8.6% for 2014, seeming to indicate a relatively decreasing reliance on products sold on international markets for Kyrgyzstan’s total economic performance. And while this article focuses on exported goods, it is interesting to note that Kyrgyzstan also provided $834.1 million worth of exports-related services to global customers for an additional 3.4% of GDP in PPP.

Another key indicator of a country’s economic performance is its unemployment rate. Kyrgyzstan’s unemployment rate was 3.2% at April 2019 up from 2.5% one year earlier, according to Trading Economics.

Kyrgyzstan’s Top 10 Exports

Top 10

The following export product groups represent the highest dollar value in Kyrgyzstani global shipments during 2018. Also shown is the percentage share each export category represents in terms of overall exports from Kyrgyzstan.

  1. Gems, precious metals: US$679.8 million (40.2% of total exports)
  2. Mineral fuels including oil: $139.3 million (8.2%)
  3. Knit or crochet clothing, accessories: $137.2 million (8.1%)
  4. Ores, slag, ash: $124.6 million (7.4%)
  5. Vegetables: $61.9 million (3.7%)
  6. Copper: $53.7 million (3.2%)
  7. Cotton: $34.2 million (2%)
  8. Machinery including computers: $34 million (2%)
  9. Vehicles: $33.2 million (2%)
  10. Dairy, eggs, honey: $33 million (2%)

Kyrgyzstan’s top 10 exports accounted for four-fifths (78.7%) of the overall value of its global shipments.

Exported copper posted the fastest gain, up by 231.5% from 2017 to 2018.

In second place for improving export sales was the mineral fuels including oil category via its 59.8% gain.

Kyrgyzstani shipments of cotton achieved the third-fastest improvement, via a 34.1% boost in international sales year over year.

Leading the decliners was Kyrgyzstan’s exported vehicles (down -45.6%) and machinery including computers (down -32.9%).

At the more detailed four-digit Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) code level, Kyrgyzstan’s most valuable exported product is gold (39.3% of total). In second place is precious metal ores and concentrates (7.4%) trailed by women’s blouses and shirts (5.6%), refined petroleum oils (5%), dried shelled vegetables (3.3%), copper scrap (3.1%) then uncombed cotton (2%).


The following types of Kyrgyzstani product shipments represent positive net exports or a trade balance surplus. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports.

In a nutshell, net exports represent the amount by which foreign spending on a home country’s goods or services exceeds or lags the home country’s spending on foreign goods or services.

  1. Gems, precious metals: US$667.6 million (Down by -5.3% since 2017)
  2. Ores, slag, ash: $120.5 million (Down by -15.1%)
  3. Copper: $48.1 million (Up by 368.5%)
  4. Vegetables: $47.4 million (Down by -18.7%)
  5. Dairy, eggs, honey: $24.4 million (Reversing a -$12.6 million deficit)
  6. Cotton: $18.2 million (Up by 58.6%)
  7. Glass: $12.2 million (Up by 5.1%)
  8. Nickel: $7.4 million (Reversing a -$69,000 deficit)
  9. Raw hides, skins not furskins, leather: $7.3 million (Down by -16.4%)
  10. Live animals: $5.1 million (Down by -27.3%)

Kyrgyzstan has highly positive net exports in the international trade of gold and, to a lesser extent, precious metal scrap and silver. In turn, these cashflows indicate Kyrgyzstan’s strong competitive advantages under the gems and precious metals product category.


Overall, Kyrgyzstan incurred a -$3.1 billion trade deficit for 2018 thus expanding by 16.7% from the -$2.7 billion in red ink one year earlier.

Below are exports from Kyrgyzstan that result in negative net exports or product trade balance deficits. These negative net exports reveal product categories where foreign spending on home country Kyrgyzstan’s goods trail Kyrgyzstani importer spending on foreign products.

  1. Mineral fuels including oil: -US$482.1 million (Down by -12.2% since 2017)
  2. Machinery including computers: -$425.4 million (Up by 35.6%)
  3. Footwear: -$349.2 million (Up by 40%)
  4. Electrical machinery, equipment: -$274.9 million (Up by 18%)
  5. Manmade staple fibers: -$177.5 million (Down by -7.5%)
  6. Pharmaceuticals: -$156 million (Down by -7.1%)
  7. Plastics, plastic articles: -$148.8 million (Up by 27%)
  8. Iron, steel: -$147.5 million (Up by 23.4%)
  9. Clothing, accessories (not knit or crochet): -$123.3 million (Up by 60.1%)
  10. Vehicles: -$121.4 million (Up by 39.5%)

Kyrgyzstan has highly negative net exports and therefore deep international trade deficits for mineral fuels including oil, particularly refined petroleum oils and, to a lesser extent, petroleum gases, petroleum coke or residues then coal.


Kyrgyzstani Export Companies

Not one Kyrgyzstani corporation ranks among Forbes Global 2000 for 2016.

Wikipedia does list some exporters from Kyrgyzstan. Selected examples are shown below:

  • Air Kyrgyzstan (domestic & international airliner)
  • Asia Universal Bank (commercial bank)
  • Enesay (beverages)
  • Shoro (beverages)


Kyrgyzstan’s capital city is Bishkek.

See alsoCrude Oil Exports by Country, Gold Exports by Country and Capital Facts for Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

Research Sources:
Forbes Global 2000 rankings, The World’s Biggest Public Companies. Accessed on March 18, 2019

International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on July 4, 2019

Investopedia, Net Exports Definition. Accessed on March 18, 2019

Trade Map, International Trade Centre. Accessed on July 4, 2019

Wikipedia, Gross domestic product. Accessed on July 4, 2019

Wikipedia, Kyrgyzstan. Accessed on March 18, 2019

Wikipedia, List of Companies of Kyrgyzstan. Accessed on March 18, 2019

Wikipedia, Purchasing power parity. Accessed on July 4, 2019