Uzbekistan creates bank to support agricultural export


TASHKENT (TCA) — Uzbekistan President Shavkat Mirziyayev on January 27 signed a decree establishing a joint stock commercial bank, Uzagroexportbank, aimed at financial support of companies exporting Uzbek fruit and vegetable products and local producers of agricultural products, Novosti Uzbekistana news agency reported.

The main founder and stakeholder of the new bank will be the state-run Fund for Reconstruction and Development of Uzbekistan, which will contribute 7.5 million euros (75 percent) of the bank’s initial charter capital of 10 million euros.     

The president’s decree recommends the bank to attract, before 1 January 2020, a strategic foreign investor to acquire at least 15 percent of the charter capital.
In recent years the government of Uzbekistan has been pursuing a policy of increasing the export of fresh and processed fruit and vegetable products.

The Jahon information agency reported that Uzbekistan’s agricultural export company Uzagroexport plans to export more than 1.27 million tons of fruit and vegetables in 2017.

In 2016, Uzbekistan exported 818,500 tons of fruit and vegetables, 38.3% more than in 2015, including 242,100 tons of vegetables (29.6% of the total), 229,600 tons of fruits (28%), 6,800 tons of melons (0.8 %), 96,200 tons of grapes (11.7%), 120,200 tons of legumes (14.7%), and 124,500 tons of dried products (15.2%).

Fruit and vegetables were exported to 43 countries, while the map of exports expanded by 9 new countries last year: canned capers were delivered to Spain and Italy for the first time, walnuts – to Lebanon, dried grapes – to Vietnam and Israel, dried vegetables – to Belgium, grapes and melons – to Switzerland, dried apricots – to the Netherlands, grapes and dried fruits – to the Czech Republic.

In 2016, Uzbekistan ranked 48th among the world’s largest exporters of fruit and vegetables.

Sergey Kwan