The grand opening of the felt production facility took place in Jeti-Oguz village of Jeti-Oguz region on April 20, 2018. The workshop was launched as part of the local community mobilization project, implemented jointly with the ‘One Village One Product’ Association (OVOP) and funded by Kumtor Gold Company (KGC).
The new workshop were renovated, overhauled and improved using funds allocated by KGC. Local authorities also provided support to producers, allocating a room in the old school building on a no-cost basis.
The opening of the workshop in Jeti-Oguz village will be the first step towards the mobilization of local communities and will contribute to the small business development and job creation in the region. The personnel of the production facility will consist of members of ten jaamat-communities, which include about 70 women from the nearby villages. The workshop in Jety-Oguz village focuses on the manufacture of wool goods using dry and wet felting methods.
Products of local producers – members of the ‘One Village One Product’ Association – are available in the ‘Issyk-Kul Brand’ stores in Karakol and Bishkek, at Gazprom gas stations, in guesthouses, hotels and coffee shops throughout Kyrgyzstan. The total number of sales outlets is about 30. In addition, felt goods manufactured by the Association are exported to Japan, the USA and Europe. On an average, each member of the local community earns KGS 10,000 – 18,000 per month, depending on the production volume.
“Over the years of fruitful cooperation with the Association, by joint efforts, we have provided jobs to many local craftswomen. We are happy to support the entrepreneurship development in the region, where the company carries out its operations. Providing support to such sustainable initiatives is one of the key areas of the company’s social investments,” said Aktilek Tungatarov, Director, Sustainable Development, Kumtor Gold Company.
“Today we are opening the fourth production facility within the framework of our cooperation with Kumtor. Note that the opening of such production facilities directly affects the quality of products. We always aim to produce competitive high-quality goods, which will be in demand in foreign markets. We are very grateful to Kumtor Gold Company for financial support and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) for technical support of the ‘One Village One Product’ approach implementation,” Chairman of the OVOP Association Temirlan Batyrkanov noted.
Cooperation of KGC with the Association began in 2013. As part of the KGC-OVOP joint project, production facilities were opened in Shor-Bulak and Ak-Say villages of Ton region. This year, another production facility has opened in Kara-Koo village of Ton region. Trainings on the basics of marketing, financial accounting and working capital management aimed at improving production skills of local manufacturers were also held within this joint project. The project covered about 800 people from 20 villages and 78 local communities of two regions.
For information: ‘One Village One Product’ Association (OVOP) was established in 2011 by local manufacturers of Issyk-Kul oblast as part of JICA project “Community Empowerment Through Small Business Promotion by ‘One Village One Product’ Approach.” All products of the Association are promoted under the ‘Issyk-Kul Brand’ trademark. The Association is a small business success model promoted at the level of a small group that manufactures products using local resources. At present, the Association consists of more than 2,200 members (220 local communities), and the majority of them are women.