OECD Central Asia Initiative

Launched in November 2008, the OECD Central Asia Initiative (CAI) aims to render the region more competitive and attractive to foreign investment. The Initiative covers seven countries: Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. OECD and partner countries help to define the CAI work priorities and to identify new policy areas for OECD intervention. The CAI is an integral part of the OECD Eurasia Competitiveness Programme and is co-chaired by the EU and Kyrgyzstan.

In Focus

The latest Policy Insights, Boosting Private Sector Development and Entrepreneurship in Afghanistan (2019) looks at how Afghanistan can create the conditions for the emergence of a dynamic private sector.

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Enhancing Competitiveness in Central Asia

Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan have recorded impressive economic growth rates since 2000, driven mainly by the export of commodities and labour. However, the end of the commodity super-cycle and the economic slowdown that followed have highlighted the risks inherent in this reliance on minerals exports and remittances, as well as the challenges to be overcome to achieve more stable and inclusive growth.

The Central Asian countries have long recognised the importance of enhancing the competitiveness of their economies, diversifying the production structures and improving the resilience to external shocks. It will require ambitious reforms in the areas of governance, connectivity, and business environment. This new OECD publication focuses mostly on aspects of the business environment and reflects several years of work with Central Asian countries on access to finance, business internationalisation and skills development. 


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The projects carried out by the OECD Eurasia Competitiveness Programme in the context of the Central Asia Initiative combine analytical work, capacity-building activities and monitoring of reform implementation.  Country-specific work is peer reviewed at the OECD Eurasia Competitiveness Roundtable.   

Investment and Competitiveness in Central Asia

Working to create a sound business climate for investment, increased productivity and competitiveness in six of the CAI countries.

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Supporting Competitiveness and Economic Diversification in Kazakhstan

Providing analysis and policy recommendations to Kazakhstan on how to build a more knowledge-based and private sector-led economy.

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Contact us

For more information about the CAI, please contact:
Grégory Lecomte, Project Manager

Follow us on: @OECDeurasia