• KGS/USD = 0.01137 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09283 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01137 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09283 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01137 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09283 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01137 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09283 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01137 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09283 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01137 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09283 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01137 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09283 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01137 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09283 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%

Viewing results 1 - 6 of 209

Uzbekistan to Increase Production and Export of Medicines

Uzbekistan President Shavkat Mirziyoyev called a government meeting  on 23 May to review plans for the country’s pharmaceutical industry. On 10 January, a road map for 2024–2025 was approved for the development of the pharmaceutical industry and the acceleration of related investment projects. This was followed by a presidential decree of 23 January which identified additional measures required to regulate the pharmaceutical sector. To date, a budget of $100 million has been allocated for the realization of new projects in the industry, boosted by an injection of $200 million from Asakabank. As a result, two projects worth $30.5 million have been launched over the past four months, with exports totalling $51 million. However, a lot of potential remains untapped. To redress the balance, plans are now underway to produce pharmaceutical products worth $400 million and increase the exports to $200 million.  A total of 147 projects worth $2 billion will be launched this year alongside the commission of a further 28. The head of state emphasized the need to increase the level of domestically produced medicines available in Uzbekistan and to ensure a balance between price and quality. The meeting also reviewed measures to intensify the work of the innovative pharmaceutical cluster, Tashkent Pharma Park, by launching 12 projects worth $470 million.  

Construction of First IT Town in Uzbekistan Begins

The construction of the first IT town in Uzbekistan is underway in the Parkent district of the Tashkent region, the press service of the Ministry of Digital Development has reported. The launch ceremony was held last week, on May 18, with the “Villayat Samsarak: Creative Eco-IT Village” project being presented. The IT town will serve the development of “green” and creative sectors in the Tashkent region, it was stated. On May 15, President Miziyoyev's decree “On the organization of the activities of IT-towns aimed at creating additional conditions for digitization and learning foreign languages for young people in the regions” was accepted. The construction and modernization of such educational centers are to be financed by public-private partnerships, sponsors, and other sources. The Foundation for the Development of Digital Technologies is responsible for the provision of educational materials. The construction of IT- towns in some regions of Uzbekistan is also to be carried out at the expense of the State Fund for Youth Policy Support.

Uzbekistan to Build Central Asia’s First Solar Plant with Battery Energy Storage System

On 21 May, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company PJSC (Masdar) signed off a $46.5 million loan for the construction of greenfield solar power plant and battery energy storage system (BESS) in Uzbekistan’s Bukhara region. The Nur Bukhara plant will be Central Asia's first renewable power facility with  utility-scale battery storage. ADB reported that a further $26.5 million has been secured from the Japan International Cooperation Agency. Loans for the realization of the project have also been agreed by the International Finance Corporation, the Canada–IFC Blended Climate Finance Program and the Dutch Entrepreneurial Development Bank. The new facility, with a capacity to generate 250 megawatts and store 126 megawatt-hours of energy, will include the construction of a 20-kilovolt substation and a 3.1-kilometer transmission line to connect to the grid. Set to deliver 555 gigawatt-hours of clean energy per annum, the plant will provide power for some 55,000 households. By enabling electricity to be stored and delivered on demand, BESS  will reduce grid instability, and provide the flexibility to integrate intermittent solar resources. Generated power will be sold exclusively to the National Electric Grid of Uzbekistan. Commending the project, Masdar Director of Corporate Finance and Treasury Bruce Johnson commented: "Masdar is proud to be a key partner in Uzbekistan's clean energy journey. We are strong supporters of the country’s ambitious renewable energy targets, alongside key partners including ADB. Projects like Nur Bukhara will enhance the affordability and accessibility of reliable, clean energy for all Uzbek citizens and drive private sector growth." To meet the increasing demand for energy from Uzbekistan’s economy and growing population, the government aims to increase renewable energy generation by up to 25 GW, equivalent to 40 percent of the country’s overall electricity consumption, by 2030.  

Uzbekistan’s Banks Double Their Capital in Five Years

Uzbekistan's president Shavkat Mirziyoyev has familiarized himself with a presentation on the country's banks' participation in attracting foreign investments. Over the past five years, the capital of Uzbek banks has doubled, their loan portfolio has increased 2.3 times, and the volume of annual lending has grown 1.8 times. Mirziyoyev commented: "Four banks issued Eurobonds for the first time and attracted $1.3 billion. Last year, banks attracted $3.8 billion worth of foreign loans, and their large clients directly attracted $6 billion without government guarantees. In modern conditions, it is necessary to expand this activity and realize projects qualitatively". The presentation also provided information on the activities of the National Bank of Uzbekistan and Uzpromstroybank. This year, the National Bank plans to implement projects worth $6 billion. Uzpromstroybank plans to attract funds worth $3.1 billion from the international financial market this year. The bank's clients have started the realization of investment projects worth $4.8 billion. Mirziyoyev has called for systematic monitoring of investment projects of clients and prompt resolution of emerging problems, emphasizing the importance of comprehensive support of entrepreneurs at all levels -- from district to republican, increasing their financial and innovation awareness.

High Gold Prices Keep the Uzbek Economy Afloat

In March this year, Uzbekistan became the largest seller of gold in the world: eleven tons of the strategic asset were sold. This strategy has allowed it to maintain reserves at a time of increasing government debt and state budget deficit. "We have a trade deficit, a budget deficit. Perhaps other exports are not as good as we would like them to be. With high gold prices amid geopolitical instability, there are worse times to sell gold," Yuli Yusupov, an independent Tashkent-based economist, told Radio Ozodlik. As of May 1, Uzbekistan's foreign exchange reserves totaled $34.2 billion, of which about $26.5 billion was gold, according to the country's Central Bank. By the end of 2023, the country's "financial safety cushion" has decreased by $1.2 billion - from $35.77 billion to $34.56 billion. Gold helps Uzbekistan "stay afloat" in difficult economic conditions. Between 2010 and 2014 the country exported 207 tons; between 2015 and 2020 it exported 480 tons. Now, Uzbekistan produces an average of 100 tons of gold per year, with plans to produce 150 tons. At this rate, gold reserves should last 20-30 years, but the republic is developing new quarries, the reserves of which could be quite impressive. For example, reserves in the Yoshlik mine may be up to 5,000 tons. Nevertheless, according to analysts, the constant sale of gold is not a long-term solution, and it will be necessary to develop industrial production and services, and export goods with high added value. Uzbekistan's growing dependence on gold is evidence of obvious problems in the economy, which, despite visible positive changes, remains in a deadlock. By the end of 2023, when Uzbekistan's trade deficit amounted to a record $13.7 billion, the share of gold exports in the total volume rose to a third. President Mirziyoyev's rise to power marked sweeping economic reforms that have attracted foreign investors, but at the same time increased external debt, which by the end of 2023, according to the International Monetary Fund, amounted to $31.7 billion, or 35.1% of the country's GDP, roughly doubling in the past five years. Under Islam Karimov (Uzbekistan's first president) this varied between 10-15%.

IMF Positive on Uzbekistan’s Progress

The International Monetary Fund held consultations with the authorities of Uzbekistan in Tashkent from April 23 to May 7, 2024. According to the results of the discussions, the organization delivered their official statement regarding the mission on May 14. According to the statement, the rate of growth of Uzbekistan’s economy remains high. Although the volume of remittances has returned to the trend of the period until 2022, the implementation of stimulative fiscal policies, a sharp increase in fixed capital investment and private consumption served to increase GDP in real terms by 6% in 2023. In the first quarter of 2024, the growth rate remained high. Steady growth in real incomes and measures to expand the scope of the social protection system since 2020 helped reduce the poverty rate from 17% in 2021 to 11% in 2023. Headline inflation fell from 12.3% at the end of 2022 to 8% in March 2024 due to a relatively high real base rate and lower global food and energy prices. In 2023, the external current account deficit expanded to 8.6% of GDP from 3.5% in 2022. This increase was driven by a surge in imports of machinery and equipment (some of which is temporary), lower remittances compared to 2022, higher net interest payments on foreign debt, and repatriation of earnings by foreign-owned businesses. Despite buoyant gold exports, international reserves decreased by $1.2 billion in 2023, although they remain substantial, equivalent to about nine months of imports as of March 2024. The authorities’ strong reform efforts in energy, privatization, and state-owned enterprises (SOEs) continue to bolster economic prospects. Real GDP growth is expected to be robust at 5.4% in 2024, supported by strong domestic demand, and is projected to edge up to 5.5% in 2025. Ongoing fiscal adjustments, moderate bank lending growth, and the reversal of temporary import increases in 2023 are set to curb import growth and reduce the current account deficit this year and next. Inflation is expected to temporarily rise by the end of 2024 due to higher administered energy prices, but sustained tight macroeconomic and macro-prudential policies, alongside structural reforms, aim to lower it toward the Central Bank of Uzbekistan’s target. However, risks remain elevated given the highly uncertain external environment. External risks include spillovers from an escalation of Russia’s conflict in Ukraine, commodity price volatility, and a sudden global economic downturn. Domestically, risks involve slower fiscal consolidation, weakened bank balance sheets, and potential liabilities from state banks, SOEs, and public-private partnerships (PPPs). Upside risks include acceleration of structural reforms, continued favorable inflows of income and capital, and higher gold prices. The authorities aim to join the World Trade Organization, which, along with enhanced trade cooperation and improved transport routes, would boost Uzbekistan’s exports. Closing gender gaps in labor force participation would increase inclusion, productivity, and GDP. Climate adaptation policies and incentives for green technology would mitigate vulnerabilities, de-carbonize the economy, and promote green growth. “The government should maintain momentum on anti-corruption efforts, building on sustained and significant improvements in governance...

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