China and Russia Uzbekistan’s main trade partners in 2017

TASHKENT (TCA) — Uzbekistan’s foreign trade grew 16.7 percent on-year in the first nine months of 2017 and amounted to US $20 billion, according to figures released by the country’s Central Bank.

Uzbekistan’s import increased by 8.4 percent and exceeded $9.6 billion. The overall growth was due to increased imports of chemical products by 5.6 percent (17.1 percent of the total imports), energy sources and oil products by 13.5 percent (5.2 percent of the total), machines and equipment by 1.8 percent (38.7 percent of the total), and services by 22.5 percent (7.3 percent).

Uzbekistan mostly imported from China (20.9 percent of the total), Russia (20.3 percent), South Korea (9.2 percent), Kazakhstan (7.5 percent), Turkey (4.8 percent), and Germany (4.7 percent).

During the period, Uzbekistan mostly exported to Russia (15.7 percent of the total), China (14.3 percent), Kazakhstan (8 percent), Turkey (6 percent), and Afghanistan (4.1 percent).

In 2017, the government of Uzbekistan took a number of measures to liberalize foreign trade and increase the country’s export potential. Customs duties for all exported goods and services were abolished and the licensing and export system was simplified. A zero rate of customs duties has been established for more than 60 percent of goods items.

Introduction of free conversion of the national currency in 2017 was another step towards the liberalization of the Uzbek economy. Starting from September 2017, the procedure for compulsory sale of the foreign currency received from exports was canceled.

Sergey Kwan

TCA