Switzerland supports the Kyrgyz Republic in building the disaster risk resilience of vulnerable communities

Local news, 28.03.2023

The Ministry of Emergency Situations (MES) of the Kyrgyz Republic and the UN World Food Programme (WFP) have established two automated gabion net production workshops in Chui and Osh provinces and improved the capacity of the digital disaster monitoring and early warning systems of MES. 

Gabion net production © the UN World Food Programme, 2023.

Thanks to the support from the Government of Switzerland, two modern production lines and four trucks were handed over to the Ministry of Emergency Situations. Through this project, the MES moved from manual to automated local production of gabion nets, allowing the two workshops to manufacture the required amount of gabion nets annually, increasing the production rate by four times. The trucks will deliver the much-needed gabion nets to far away regions throughout the country in a timely manner and shorten the lead time for emergency assistance. Additionally, the information technology infrastructure for disaster monitoring and early warning systems were improved. This contribution will significantly enhance the ability of MES to protect the livelihoods of vulnerable population and ultimately reduce the impact of climate change on food and nutrition security.


“The Government of Switzerland will continue to support vulnerable communities prone to natural disasters. We are proud to provide the Ministry of Emergency Situations the resources to prevent and mitigate the effects of climate change and build a systemic approach in managing hazards, such as droughts, mudslides and floods,” said the Ambassador of Switzerland to the Kyrgyz Republic Olivier Bangerter.


With the automated system and quality assurance processes in place, the workshops, operating on a Public-Private Partnership basis, will allow the country to produce the necessary gabion nets required. Previously, large bulk of the gabion nets were imported from abroad. Produced gabion nets will be used to strengthen slopes, protect riverbed and banks and other disaster prevention measures.


“We thank the Government of Switzerland for this effective contribution and its commitment in supporting the vulnerable communities in rural and mountainous areas. WFP will continue to closely work with the Government at all levels, to facilitate the shift from disaster response to disaster risk management and allowing sustainable and transformative changes among vulnerable rural communities affected by the climate change,” said WFP Representative and Country Director in the Kyrgyz Republic, Mr. Kojiro Nakai.


In January 2023, the Government of Switzerland has allocated over USD 9.2 million to WFP’s pillar aimed at building the resilience of the most vulnerable rural communities against climate change and disaster risks. This component is being implemented by WFP in partnership with the Ministry of Emergency Situations of the Kyrgyz Republic. The activities within the pillar will cover Osh, Batken, Jalalabad and Naryn provinces and support around 250,000 most vulnerable households, as well as targeted local authorities and institutions at the national level. Reliable and timely climate information, disaster-resilient planning and selected infrastructure support will be provided to the beneficiaries. In 2022, USD 2.2 million was allocated by the Government of Switzerland to this component.


Local news, 06.03.2023

The French Alliance in Bishkek, jointly with the Embassies of France, Switzerland, Belgium, Canada and the EU Delegation in Kyrgyzstan, are happy to announce the holding of the 2023 edition of the Week of the Francophonie from March 9 to 18. 

Poster of Francophonie © French Alliance in Bishkek, 2023.

The "Francophonie Week" is the festival of the French language and cultures of the French-speaking countries, which is celebrated in the middle of March across the world. The organizers and partners have prepared a program for the broad public, which consists of 20 events. This year the topic is travelling. 

French is the fifth language spoken in the world, the third language for business, used by more than 300 million people on five continents, and also is known as the language of diplomacy. 88 countries are members of the International Organization of Francophonie, in 29 of which French is the official language.

The Francophonie Week will be launched on March 9 with a public screening of the French documentary film "The Snow Leopard" starting at 18:30 in Ala-Too Cinema (free entry).  

The Swiss documentary film "Ella Maillart's Extraordinary Journey" will be presented on March 17 at 18:00 at the National Historical Museum (203 Chui Ave.). The first part of the film describes the trip of Ella Maillart in the 1920 in Kyrgyzstan, cruising on the Issyk-Kul lake and then travelling by horse to the Tian Shan mountains and the Chinese border. 100 years later, François Perraudin, a Swiss photographer and movie maker, takes a similar approach describing what has changed or not in Kyrgyzstan, from the lake of Kol-Suu in the south east to the bears Isabelle in the Besh Tash natural reserve, over the rice milling in Uzgen and the petroglyphs of Saimaluu Tash. The movie gives insight in the Kyrgyz daily life as well as in the wildlife from the whole country. 

After the Swiss film a photo exhibition of Ella Maillart's journey through Kyrgyzstan will be presented (Free entry).

Screening of the Canadian film will be held on March 13 at 18:00, the Belgian film – March 14 at 18:00 at the Academy of Tourism (address: 99 Shabdan Baatyra street). Free entry.