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UNDP Turkmenistan


Programme at a glance


The Governance, Economic Diversification, and Inclusive Growth programme has a very diverse portfolio which ranges from human rights and rule of law issues to strengthening statistical capacity, development of digital public services, and reforming the social and economic structures of the economy of Turkmenistan.

UNDP in Turkmenistan contributes to strengthening democratic principles, improving economic performance, and fostering high living standards by supporting the development of responsive national institutions, strengthening human potential, and nurturing inclusive participation in line with national development plans and priorities, including achieving the SDGs. This includes improving national capacity to report to United Nations treaty bodies, increasing participation in the regional and global economic and trade processes, enhancing national employment and labour capacities, and modernizing public administration via development of digital public services.

The programme has significantly contributed to the nationalization and implementation of Sustainable Development Goals of Turkmenistan and transforming UNDP to take up its role of SDG integrator at the height of the UN reform.

Gender equality is at the heart of UNDP work. Acting against global trends, UNDP Turkmenistan has stepped up its efforts to promote gender equality and women's empowerment across the Governance, Economic Diversification and Inclusive Growth.

We help women become economically self-sufficient through training, mentoring, employment, and entrepreneurship development. We unite with the national and development partners to empower women and girls with digital skills, provide a platform to create innovative ideas and showcase their newfound technical talents, and encourage more women developers to pursue careers in IT to create a sustainable and inclusive future for all.

Together with partners we work on strengthening the multi-sectoral response to gender-based violence and work towards ending sexual and gender-based violence and harmful practices in Central Asia and beyond. 

With every opportunity arising, we foster human development in the heart of the economic growth of the country. We make every effort to make sure that the results of our work are sustainable and have long-term positive impact on people of Turkmenistan. We are enriching the transformations that the Government is undertaking with knowledge and innovations, making sure that no one is left behind.

UNDP Turkmenistan



As Turkmenistan embarks on digitalization of its economy, the country faces several important tasks to accomplish. Enhance the capacity of the public and private sector servants to embrace a full-fledged reform; plan a gradual shift and the reform across all sectors of the economy; and implement the vision of digital Turkmenistan across all areas of work. In this regard, the pioneers of digitalization come out with individual initiatives to take the process further.

The State Bank for Foreign Economic Affairs (Vnesheconombank) has partnered with UNDP to design a medium-term business strategy which foresees improvement digital banking services. With UNDP technical support, Vnesheconombank seeks to enhance its capacity for better management of international development finance in order to implement SDGs and support implementation of the business and digital transformation of the country’s banking sector.


Taking care of the vulnerable population allows to promote social equality and contributes to the growing economy. In Turkmenistan, empowering people with disabilities (PWDs) with the rights and opportunities to join social and economic sectors means embracing over 120 000 people. UNDP together with the civil society of Turkmenistan implemented a number of initiatives and annually comes up with the actions to raise awareness and eliminate social stigma around the disability topic.

Starting with short-term courses in 2015, UNDP together with the Blind and Deaf Society of Turkmenistan and other civil society organizations have promoted educational opportunities for the PWDs to obtain professional education to become competitive under the condition of the market economy. Also, UNDP has contributed to the implementation of the Action plan on promotion of the rights of persons of disabilities of the Ministry of labor and social protection of Turkmenistan through advancing employment opportunities for PWDs in the private sector of Turkmenistan.


In July 2019, Turkmenistan has presented its first Voluntary national review on sustainable development goals implementation (VNR) at the High-level political forum in New York. The report demonstrates Turkmenistan’s commitment to advance national sustainable development agenda and improve its data collection and reporting mechanisms.

In preparation of the VNR, UNDP together with the Ministry of Finance and Economy of Turkmenistan have partnered to provide a platform for contributions of all interested parties and stakeholder to the report. As a result, over 10 ministries and national agencies, 20 private companies, 10 civil society organizations and UN agencies have provided their input which is now reflected in the report.

Implementation of the Agenda 2030 requires a robust data collection, analysis and reporting mechanism which would allow to monitor implementation of the SDGs. In this regard, UNDP has partnered with Turkmenstat and the Ministry of Finance and Economy of Turkmenistan to improve the statistical and accounting capacities of the two agencies. It is expected that as a result of the joint cooperation, quality disaggregate data, aligned with international standards, would be available to policy makers, legislators, and the interested public to monitor the major goals of national action plans and programmes, the SDGs, and the UN-Turkmenistan Programme Framework Document to formulate new national strategies and programmes.


Promoting respect and protecting human rights is in the core of UNDP’s work which enables more strategic and sustainable development programming. UNDP serves as an entry point for many initiatives in Turkmenistan. Human rights are the cross-cutting issue theme for our programme which embraces such aspects as gender equality, promotion of disability rights and ensuring good governance.

In 2016, UNDP has supported design and adoption of the National Human Rights Action Plan 2016-2020 and the Law on Ombudsman which led to the Establishment of the Office of Ombudsman in 2017. We continue to strengthen Government’s efforts to bring the national legislation in line with the international obligations under the treaties and resolutions that Turkmenistan adopts.

We facilitate the engagement of Turkmenistan in and implementation of recommendations from the international human rights machinery. In particular, we have been a key partner supporting government to participate in and follow-through with the Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review process.


Supporting public sector improvement to provide inclusive support services is one of the primary tasks in achieving sustainable development agenda. This requires professional retraining of the civil servants for effective public administration which responds to the modern trends and development demands, including digital and technological progress.

At the same time, active civil society remains a reliable partner of the government in delivering community-based social services where no one is left behind. In this regard, establishing effective dialogue between civil society and the Government of Turkmenistan was the primary entry point for effective engagement and creating enabling environment for development of the civil society sector in the country.


It is vital to mobilize energy, flexibility, openness and dynamics of youth as a potential positive driving force against the spread and influence of radicalism and violent extremism. In Turkmenistan, we use a collective approach to develop the values of providing mutual support among youth. The youth are supported to develop their professional and business skills by expert groups from the private and public sectors, and thus enhance their opportunities in life.

In 2018, UNDP has partnered with the Labor and Employment Services of the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection of Turkmenistan to introduce new methodology of Active Labour Market Programs, such as profiling, case management, counselling and motivation targeting vulnerable youth groups such as unemployed and former prisoners.

As part of the project, specialists of Employment Services of the Turkmenbashi pilot city underwent the trainings in new methodology and put their new knowledge into practice which has already showed good progress.

As a result of applying the method of profiling, 80% of interviewed young men and women, who registered with the Employment Services were able to find employment since May 2019.

Along with introducing the Active Labour Market methodology, young men and women were offered trainings on resume writing, communication, conflict prevention, generating business ideas, basics of business and writing of a business plan. These trainings were conducted in partnership with the Youth organization of the Turkmenbashi city, Employment Services and project staff.