Strategic Financing for Biodiversity: BIOFIN's Impact on Kyrgyzstan's Conservation Efforts

July 8, 2024

Biodiversity is the foundation of a healthy and resilient ecosystem. In Kyrgyzstan, the unique landscapes, from the soaring peaks of the Tien Shan mountains to the lush valleys and steppe regions, are home to a rich array of plant and animal species. However, as challenges such as limited financial resources, institutional capacity gaps, and emerging environmental threats facing protected areas become increasingly complex, the need for transparent and efficient budgeting mechanisms becomes more apparent than ever.

In recent years, Kyrgyzstan has been actively developing strategies for biodiversity conservation and the effective management of specially protected natural areas (SPNAs). The country, covered with unique natural beauty, strives to ensure a balance between nature conservation and socio-economic development.

UNDP / Kyrgyzstan

The Biodiversity Finance Initiative (BIOFIN), launched by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), aims to develop and implement comprehensive national finance solutions for biodiversity. BIOFIN's approach involves assessing the financial needs for biodiversity conservation, identifying financing gaps, and developing strategies to mobilize resources from various sectors. BIOFIN has been a crucial partner in addressing these challenges, helping to secure sustainable financing for biodiversity conservation in the country. 

“Enhanced results-based budgeting for biodiversity will improve the skills of government officials and local staff in protected areas in integrating biodiversity into policy and budget planning,” said Lira Zholdubaeva, UNDP Policy and Programme Analyst. 

BIOFIN has provided critical support to the Department of Biodiversity Conservation and Protected Areas (DBCPA) and the Forest Service in implementing program-based budgeting in protected areas (PAs) and forestry enterprises, as well as in developing medium-term strategic management plans for PAs. These innovative approaches offer a pathway toward greater transparency, accountability, and sustainability in conservation efforts.

The management plans provide a comprehensive strategic framework for guiding the management and utilization of natural resources within PAs. They outline specific goals, objectives, and actions to ensure the sustainable stewardship of these invaluable ecosystems. BIOFIN Kyrgyzstan facilitated the development of these plans by building the capacities of staff from 23 PAs through training. Once the staff were trained, hands-on support was provided to develop actual management plans for each protected area.

As a result of this technical support, all PAs now have a structured management plan (a 5-year strategic document) that provides a framework for decision-making, guiding the allocation of resources, and ensuring the effective management and protection of natural resources within PAs and other ecosystems.

As Turatbek Satimbaev, a leading specialist of the Department of Biodiversity Conservation and Specially Protected Natural Areas under the Ministry of Natural Resources, Ecology and Technical Supervision of the Kyrgyz Republic, mentioned: “Budget measures are an integral part of the budget program and constitute types of work (events, projects, routine tasks, regular purchases, etc.) that directly support the implementation of the budget program.”

UNDP / Kyrgyzstan

The implementation of result-based program budgeting alongside management plans enhances the effectiveness of conservation efforts. Unlike traditional line-item budgeting, which allocates funds based on predetermined categories, result-based program budgeting focuses on the outcomes and impact of investments rather than inputs.

The challenges of biodiversity conservation are ongoing, but the progress made with BIOFIN's support provides a hopeful outlook. Moving forward, continued collaboration and innovation in financing will be essential to ensuring that Kyrgyzstan's rich biodiversity is preserved for future generations.

“If the management plans are developed based on the program budget, the main activities (protection, conservation, firefighting activities, restoration of natural ecosystems, development of ecological tourism, conducting biotechnical activities in the necessary areas, etc.) are expected to be fully ensured,” said Turatbek Satimbaev. 

BIOFIN's work in Kyrgyzstan demonstrates the power of strategic financing in achieving tangible conservation outcomes. As more countries and organizations adopt similar approaches, the global effort to protect biodiversity can become more effective and sustainable.

UNDP / Kyrgyzstan


BIOFIN, a global initiative supported by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and other partners, aims to mobilize resources and policies for biodiversity conservation and promote sustainable management practices. Promoting biodiversity conservation through management plans and program-based budgeting has been implemented with financial support from the European Union and the German government.