Kyrgyzstan obtained GSP+ status from the European Union in January 2016. However, according to National Statistics Committee, Kyrgyzstan's exports to Europe amounted to only $54.3 thousand out of the total external and mutual trade volume of $2.7 billion for January-March 2023.
The preferential export of Kyrgyzstan under the GSP+ scheme is focused on the import of fruits, nuts, vegetables, and other products.
Experts point out several reasons why Kirghiz exporters struggle to enter the EU markets. One of the main problems is high logistics costs since Kyrgyzstan has no seaport. Other difficulties include the lack of laboratories for product certification and a shortage of information on the quality and quantity of goods. Also, rigid EU standards that Kirghiz products do not comply with, and a relatively underdeveloped marketing and research sector.
Despite these challenges, experts believe that GSP+ status is important and necessary for Kyrgyzstan. This helps the country promote its products in the EU markets, although these markets are not as promising as they would like.