EUCBI PRESS CENTRE

President Shavkat Mirziyoyev to visit Switzerland in 2019

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The fifth round of Uzbek-Swiss political consultations was held in Bern on November 19.

The delegation of the Republic of Uzbekistan was headed by Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dilshod Akhatov, the delegation of the Swiss Confederation – Deputy Secretary of State of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, Christina Marty Lang.

The parties confirmed their mutual interest in the preparation and successful conduct of the visit of President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev to Switzerland in 2019.

Special attention was paid to deepening cooperation in trade, economic, investment and financial spheres.

The meeting also exchanged views on key aspects of regional and international issues.

SOURCE: www.uzreport.news/politics/president-shavkat-mirziyoyev-to-visit-switzerland-in-2019

Foreign Minister Abdulaziz Kamilov to pay visit to Brussels

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The delegation of the Republic of Uzbekistan headed by Foreign Minister Abdulaziz Kamilov will pay a working visit to Brussels on November 21-24.

The Uzbek delegation will take part in the next meeting of the Cooperation Council «Uzbekistan – European Union», regional meeting «European Union – Central Asia», hold bilateral talks with EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini, Foreign Minister of the EU Presidency of Austria Karin Kneisel, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Belgium Didier Reynders and other officials.

SOURCE: www.uzreport.news/politics/foreign-minister-abdulaziz-kamilov-to-pay-visit-to-brussels

First International Investment Forum in tourism sphere to take place in Uzbekistan

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Tashkent, Uzbekistan (UzDaily.com) — In order to expand international cooperation in the tourism development, attracting direct investment and promoting the country’s tourism opportunities among potential investors and guests of Uzbekistan, the First International Tourism Investment Forum will be held in Tashkent on 19-20 November. The first two days the forum will work at Tashkent “Uzexpocenter”, on the third day it is planned to go to the main tourist centers.

At the end of 2016, President S. Mirziyoyev signed a Decree “On measures to ensure the accelerated development of the tourism industry of the Republic of Uzbekistan”, which determined the positive dynamics of its development in 2018. In particular, in the first 9 months of this year, the number of foreign visitors amounted to 4.4 million people compared to 2.2 million in the same period of 2017.

The introduction of visa free regime with 18 countries, simplified regime for obtaining visas for 50 countries and transit visa for 101 countries has become a significant impetus for the development of inbound tourism in Uzbekistan. In just 3 months of operation of the E-visa system, about 19,5 thousand electronic visas were issued by citizens of 49 countries.

It is important to note that the Government of the Republic of Uzbekistan signed the Resolution “On Additional Measures for the Effective Implementation of the First International Investment Forum in the tourism sphere in Tashkent from November 19-21, 2018 ”, within  exceptional conditions provided for investors, namely the possibility of allocating an investor for specific investment obligations of land for the construction of tourist infrastructure without electronic auctions.

It is also noted that measures have been taken to increase entrepreneurial activity for investment, including the provision of tax and customs benefits for businessmen in the tourism sphere, simplification of licensing and certification procedures, making tourism more attractive for foreign investment. Prominent foreign companies of Turkey, China, India, the United Arab Emirates, Singapore, Russia and other countries have expressed interest in developing joint projects in the creation of various infrastructure tourist facilities in the Republic of Uzbekistan.

The Forum in the tourism sphere is organized by the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan for Tourism Development, the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan for Investments, the Ministry of the Republic of Uzbekistan of Foreign Affairs and the Embassy of the Republic of Uzbekistan abroad, the Ministry of Foreign Trade, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Uzbekistan.

The forum will bring together 300 participants from 48 countries, representatives of international financial institutions and organizations in the tourism sector, experts and specialists in the tourism industry, heads of major domestic and foreign companies.

Together with this, the Forum will be covered by more than 30 media representatives from 16 foreign countries.

Within the framework of the event over 500 investment projects from all regions of Uzbekistan, including such projects as free tourist zones of “Charvak”, Samarkand city, Ancient  Bukhara, small tourist areas in the Surkhandarya region is planned to present, as well as Olmazor City and Farg’ona yo’li (route) projects in the city of Tashkent and many others.

The projects include hotel and shopping complexes, resort areas, health centers, theme parks, restaurants, agro-tourist camps and more.

According the program of the Forum the Opening ceremony of the event, the presentation of investment projects in the tourism sphere, meeting sessions, B2B and B2G meetings are scheduled for.

Following the results of the International Investment Forum in the tourism sphere, signing of agreements and memorandums of cooperation between investors, ministries, departments and hokimiyats (city administrations) are expected.

Also, the Forum program provides for visits to the regions of the Republic by potential investors in case of their interest in a particular project.

EIB delegation to visit Uzbekistan

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Tashkent, Uzbekistan (UzDaily.com) — A delegation of the European Investment Bank headed by the EIB Vice President Vazil Hudák will take part in the First International Tourism Investment Forum (MIF) in Tashkent on 19-21 November 2018.

This was announced during a meeting of the Ambassador of Uzbekistan to the European Union, Dilyor Khakimov, on the eve of the visit with the EIB officials.

EIB Managing Advisor Umberto della Pant, Head of Credit Operations for Eastern Europe and Central Asia Lionel Rapael also took part in the conversation.

The meeting discussed the upcoming events of the Uzbek-European financial cooperation. In particular, the parties exchanged views on the current state of development of promising EIB projects in Uzbekistan during implementation of the Framework Agreement (Washington, October 2017), as well as agreements on the allocation of funding in the amount of 200 million euros, signed on 5 October 2018.

Regarding the participation of the EIB delegation in the upcoming investment forum, the parties confirmed that tourism has a direct and very important economic impact on development of all related infrastructure (transport, social services, services, etc.), which ultimately turns it in a highly profitable sector of the economy of any country.

The interest of the Vice-President of the EIB was caused by the information that the MIF will bring together investors from Europe and Asia, representatives of international financial institutions and organizations in the tourism sector, experts and specialists from the tourism industry, heads of major domestic and foreign companies. In turn, Vazil Hudák confirmed that a representative delegation under his direct supervision will take part in the work of this forum.

During the meeting, it was noted that the EIB is confidently looking at expanding cooperation with Uzbekistan. In particular, in the near future, the process of developing documents for practical implementation of specific projects will continue. It is expected that this work will also involve other international financial institutions and multilateral partners.

The Vice President of the EIB stressed that the Bank does not intend to stop there. Along with the signed agreements, the focus of discussion are the priorities for Uzbekistan, identified by the leadership of our country as priorities. This applies primarily to such important sectors and sectors of socio-economic development as district heating, waste management, agriculture, and agro-food.

EBRD mission pays visit to Central Bank

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Tashkent, Uzbekistan (UzDaily.com) — A mission of the European Bank for Development and Reconstruction (EBRD) headed by Mrs. Karin Geno de Lamarlier paid a visit to the Central Bank of Uzbekistan on 16 November 2018, the regulator said in a statement.

During the meeting, the sides discussed issues on assessment of the potential readiness of the market for the new program “Women in Business”, which the EBRD is considering to launch in Uzbekistan.

The parties paid special attention to prospects for development of financing small and medium-sized businesses, especially women entrepreneurs, to the regulation of the credit sector, as well as to financial affordability.

Uzbekistan and Germany hold consultations on financial and technical cooperation

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Tashkent, Uzbekistan (UzDaily.com) — A regular meeting of the Uzbek-German Intergovernmental Consultation on Financial and Technical Cooperation was held on 14 November at the State Investment Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan.

The German side was represented by Catherine Oellers, head of the department of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMC). The German delegation also included specialists from the German Development Bank KfW and the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ).

From the Uzbek side, the meeting was chaired by Laziz Kudratov, First Deputy Chairman of the State Committee on Investments, with the participation of heads of ministries and departments of Uzbekistan.

According to the agenda of the meeting, the results of interaction and project proposals for further development of bilateral relations between Uzbekistan and Germany were discussed.

The German side noted the progress achieved in implementing reforms aimed at ensuring the rule of law, the implementation of public control mechanisms, the strengthening of the role of civil society institutions and the socio-economic development of the country as a whole.

“With the financial and technical assistance of the Government of Germany, Uzbekistan implemented a number of important projects aimed at developing vocational education, health care, agriculture, small business, and transport infrastructure systems,” Laziz Kudratov said in his speech, “We also express our gratitude to our partners — the bank KfW and the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ) for their active work and effective cooperation in Uzbekistan. ”

In turn, Catherine Oellers in her welcoming speech stressed that since the last visit to Uzbekistan in 2015, there have been significant changes in the country.

“I would like to note that Uzbekistan has begun to more effectively use its potential in such areas as the development and promotion of reforms, the development of effective government, and the field of human rights protection,” Catherine Oellers shared. “These measures also influenced the relationship between Uzbekistan and Germany have developed even more intensively. At today’s meeting, we would like to learn about the future course of the government of Uzbekistan, and find out what the main directions for our part, we could support. ”

The meeting participants said that following the results of the Intergovernmental negotiations in 2017, the parties identified the following main areas of cooperation — the implementation of projects in the field of «Health» and «Sustainable Development of the Economy». Thus, within the framework of cooperation between the Ministry of Health of Uzbekistan and the Government of Germany, an amount of 11.3 million euros was allocated for Phase IV of the Healthcare Program for investment projects. Of which, 10.3 million euros for the project «Modernization of regional multidisciplinary medical centers — phase IV» and 1 million euros for the implementation of the program «Fight against tuberculosis-V», funded by the German KfW bank.

On the eve of the Intergovernmental Consultations, Kathryn Oellers visited the Republican Scientific Center of Pediatrics and took part in the opening ceremony of the Pediatric Radiology Training Center, implemented jointly with KfW and GIZ in the framework of the project «Improving the skills of medical and technical staff to work on modern high-tech medical equipment.»

During the consultations, the parties reached an agreement on resumption of cooperation in the field of “Sustainable Development of the Economy”, which will further contribute to the economic recovery of the country, the growth of welfare of the population, the development of small and private businesses and other areas.

German policy for development is guided, first and foremost, by the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. According to the priority tasks, special attention is paid to the social adaptation of people with disabilities and ensuring their decent working conditions.

Within the framework of organized sessions, representatives of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Finance, Trade, Justice, Employment and Labor Relations, Health, Higher and Secondary Special Education, Public Education, Agriculture, Water Economy, State Committees on Forestry, on Ecology and Environment Protection and other departments, discussed potential investment projects for further cooperation with Germany for development.

Part of the issues discussed was dedicated to cooperation on regional projects such as “Strengthening quality infrastructure in Central Asia” (PTB), “Promoting the rule of law for sustainable economic development in Central Asia” (GIZ), “Vocational education in Central Asia” (GIZ) , Trade Facilitation in Central Asia (GIZ), Sustainable and Climate-Sensitive Land Use for the Benefit of Economic Development in Central Asia (GIZ) and others.

Following the results of the Uzbek-German Intergovernmental Consultations, priorities for further cooperation were identified and the relevant meeting minutes were signed.

Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan agreed on mutual recognition of visas

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Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan agreed on mutual recognition of visa regimes, says the mass media of the Prime Minister of the Kazakhstan.

The Parties signed the Agreement at the first interregional forum of Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan which took place in Chimkent and which was initiated by the Heads of both Countries.

Based on the results of the forum the Heads of the regions of both countries signed 16 documents on realization of joint projects. The Parties agreed on mutual recognition of visa regimes by the countries of Silk Road. This will allow the tourist visiting Kazakhstan to freely enter Uzbekistan and vice versa. In the perspective the other countries of the Silk Road can join to the mutual exchange of visas — Kirgizstan and Tajikistan.

“KazTransGas” JV and “Uztransgaz” JV signed an agreement for transportation of the natural gas though the territory of Uzbekistan. “KTZ Express” JV and the Scientific and Production Center “Uzaftotranstekhnika” agreed to establish a joint venture.

The Foreign Trade House of Kazakhstan and the Industrial and Commercial House of Uzbekistan informed that the first trade house of Akmolinskiy region will be opened in Tashkent in January 2019. The construction of a trade house of Uzbekistan on the territory of the Akmolinskity region is being revised for the perspective.

SOURCE: www.spot.uz/ru/2018/11/16/kz/?utm_source=push&utm_medium=telegram

Danieli & C.Officine Meccaniche S.p.A. to participate in implementation of several projects in Uzbekistan

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Tashkent, Uzbekistan (UzDaily.com) — With the participation of SFI Management Group LLC, a solemn ceremony of signing cooperation agreements was held by leading enterprises of Italy and Uzbekistan: Danieli & C.Officine Meccaniche SpA and Uzbek Metallurgical Plant JSC, as well as between Danieli & C.Officine Meccaniche SpA and Toshkent Metallurgiya Zavodi LLC.

As a result of the reforms currently underway in the Republic of Uzbekistan, it has become possible to implement large-scale industrial projects whose main objectives are the creation of modern production, export-oriented products and the creation of jobs. To implement these projects attract large foreign investment.

In accordance with the resolution of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan, Uzmetkombinat initiated the implementation of the project “Construction of a foundry-rolling complex”, which envisages the organization of the production of hot-rolled sheet metal in the amount of 1.04 million tonnes a year.

No less significant project is construction of a unique in Central Asia metallurgical plant for the production of 500,000 tonnes per year of cold-rolled metal.

Agreement between Danieli & C.Officine Meccaniche S.p.A. and Uzmetkombinat signed an agreement. Within the agreement, the main technological equipment for the production of hot-rolled sheet metal in coils will be supplied for the investment project “Construction of a Casting and Rolling Complex”.

The project will launch production of hot-rolled sheets with a thickness of 1.6 to 12.0 mm in rolls in the amount of 1.04 million tonnes a year and increase in the production of rolled ferrous metals in 2021 up to 2.1 million tonnes per year.

It will provide raw materials to Tashkent Metallurgical Plant, which is under construction. The project will help to create capacities to produce new products.

The agreement between Danieli & C.Officine Meccaniche S.p.A. and Toshkent Metallurgiya Zavodi is directed at development of cooperation between the Uzbek and Italian sides on mutually beneficial terms.

The total cost of delivery of equipment «Danieli» will be more than 75.0 million euros. The supplied technology and equipment will meet the latest requirements and international quality standards. Danieli will train the plant specialists, including outside Uzbekistan.

The main products will be hot-galvanized sheet for the automotive, construction industry, a sheet with a polymer coating for household appliances, finishing materials and related industries.

NBU and Credit Suisse sign a framework loan agreement for 200 million euros

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Tashkent, Uzbekistan (UzDaily.com) — On 13 November 2018, a framework loan agreement was signed in Zurich between the National Bank for Foreign Economic Activity of Uzbekistan and the leading Swiss bank Credit Suisse in the amount of 200 million euros.

The agreement envisages cooperation in the field of joint financing of investment projects implemented in the Republic of Uzbekistan, under the guarantee of export credit agencies (ECA), without providing a state guarantee.

The key advantage of this agreement is the ability to finance projects involving the supply of equipment and technology from Switzerland, Europe, South Korea and China.

NBU successfully has been cooperating with Credit Suisse since 1993 in the field of trade finance and payment transactions. The signed document is one of the first agreements of this kind between the Bank of Uzbekistan and Switzerland.

The banking system of Switzerland is considered one of the most reliable and is one of the benchmarks for all banks in the world. The study of international best practices in banking and the introduction of new types of banking services and products is one of the priorities of the banking sector of Uzbekistan. In the course of negotiations between NBU and Credit Suisse, a separate agreement was reached on this area of joint cooperation.

Uzbekistan’s business circles show great interest in acquiring equipment and technologies of Swiss origin in the field of textile, metallurgy, and other industries. The agreements reached will help meet the financing needs of these transactions.

Uzbekistan’s foreign trade turnover makes up US$25.77 billion

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Tashkent, Uzbekistan (UzDaily.com) — In January-October 2018, Uzbekistan’s foreign trade turnover made up US$25.77 billion and increased compared to the same period of last year by 15.9%.

State Statistics Committee of Uzbekistan said that Uzbekistan reduced exports by 4.1% — to US$10.26 billion and increased imports by 34.4% — to US$15.51 billion. Foreign trade balance with a minus US$5.25 billion.

As a result of the increase in production of products that replaced imported goods and the diversification of industrial production, significant changes have been achieved in the structure of exports. For example, an analysis of the trend in the share of cotton fiber in total exports showed that in January-October 2015, the share of exports of cotton fiber amounted to 4.1% of total exports, while 296,100 tonnes of raw materials were exported. In January-October 2016, 295,500 tonnes of cotton fiber were exported. In January-October 2017, its share in total exports fell to 3.1% and 204,800 tonnes of raw materials were exported.

According to the results of January-October 2018, the share of cotton fiber in the total export volume (1.9%) significantly decreased compared to the same period last year. During the same period, 101,500 tonnes of cotton fiber were exported in the amount of US$194.1 million.

It should be noted that in October 2018, exports of goods and services decreased by US$102.9 million compared with September, while the volume of imports of goods and services increased by US$183.9 million.

The order of the states with the largest share in the commodity turnover of the republic for the ten months of 2018 remained the same as in the previous months of the year.

As a result of measures taken by the Government of the Republic to strengthen cooperation with the CIS countries and comprehensive support of foreign trade, the share of CIS countries in foreign trade turnover in January-October 2018 was 38.3% and, compared to the same period last year, the growth rate of foreign trade turnover accounted for 32.4%.

The share of other countries in foreign trade turnover in January-October 2017 was equal to 66.5%. In the current year, foreign trade turnover with them decreased by 4.8% and amounted to 61.7%.

The volume of exports in January-October 2018 made up US$10.26 billion (compared to the same period last year decreased by 4.1%). The share of goods in the composition of exports reached 75.4%, of which energy carriers and petroleum products — 19.9%, food products — 9.0%, chemical products and products from it — 7.3%.

Analysis of the structure of exported goods and services in January-October of the current year showed that, compared with the corresponding period of last year, there were no significant changes, but it should be noted that the share of exports of certain types of goods and services in total exports in January-October of the current year decreased, compared with the corresponding period last year.

Analysis of the growth rate of exports of goods and services showed that in October 2018, exports of goods and services, compared with September, decreased by 11.5%.

The volume of export services in January-October 2018 made up US$25.22 billion, or 24.6% of total exports and increased, compared to the same period last year, by 25.3%. Transport services, tourism, as well as telecommunication, information, computer and financial services account for the bulk of service exports.

Analysis of the dynamics of exports of goods and services showed that in October, compared with September, the volume of exports of goods decreased by US$92.3 million and amounted to US$523.0 million. The export of services reached US$265.4 million.

China and Russia occupy the largest share in the export of goods and services of the Republic of Uzbekistan. The share of these countries in total exports is 37.5%. The structure of exported goods to China and Russia includes a group of energy carriers and petroleum products, chemical products and products from it, as well as food products.

The export volume of fruits and vegetables amounted to more than 1 million tonnes and reached US$732.5 million (growth rate — 43.3%). Of the fruits and vegetables, more than 561,600 tonnes of vegetables were exported (physical growth increased 2.0 times) to the amount of US$252.1 million, fruits and berries – 257,800 tonnes (physical growth increased by 11.8% ) in the amount of US$323.7 million (cash growth, compared with the same period last year, was 53.5% and 52.5%, respectively).

It is noteworthy that as a result of the expansion of the export potential of the country and the development of new markets, exports of fruits and vegetables, grapes, melons, legumes, as well as dried vegetables and fruits, are growing. In January-October 2018, exports of fruits and berries, as well as vegetables, reached US$575.8 million (a 52.9% increase over the same period last year).

In January-October 2018, exports of textile products amounted to US$1.07 billion and increased, compared to the same period of 2017, by 15.2%, which is 10.4% of total exports. Of the export structure of textile products, the main share is cotton yarn (56.7%), finished knitwear and garments (22.6%). Since the beginning of the year, more than 332 types of goods have been exported to 56 countries of the world.

It is noteworthy that in the first years of independence, exports of light industry products of the republic had a raw material focus, now our country has become a leader in the export of finished textile and light industry products.

In January-October 2018, the volume of imports amounted to US$15.51 billion (growth rate — 34.4%). In the structure of imports, the main share is occupied by machinery and equipment (41.1%), chemical products and products from it (13.3%), as well as food products (8.4%).

The highest growth rates of imports of goods and services for the ten months of 2018 were observed in February, July, August and October

Analysis of the growth rate of imports of goods and services showed that in October 2018, imports of goods and services increased by 11.1% compared with September.

In January-October 2018, the volume of imports of construction materials amounted to US$524.2 million and increased, compared to the same period of 2017, by 49.3%, which is 3.4% of the total imports. From the structure of imports of building materials, the main share is cement (27.5%), wood and wood products (16.4%), stone products, gypsum, cement, asbestos and ceramic products (10.4%), as well as glass (9.0%).

Imports of building materials in January-October 2018 increased significantly, compared with the corresponding period of 2017. The growth in the volume of imports of construction materials is due to large-scale construction and reconstruction work in our country. It should be noted that the government is implementing a number of reforms aimed at the production of building materials and products, as well as providing the domestic market with high-quality and cheap building materials.

The volume of imports of services in January-October 2018 made up US$1.85 billion, or 12.0% of total imports and increased, compared to the same period last year, by 18.9%. The main imports of services are transport services, tourism, as well as telecommunications, information, computer and financial services.

At the same time, it should be noted that over the past period of 2018 in August, imports were more than in the other months. In October of this year, the volume of imports of goods and services amounted to US$1.83 billion.

In January-October 2018, goods and services from 146 countries were imported into the republic.

Five major partner countries (the Russian Federation, the People’s Republic of China, the Republic of Korea, Kazakhstan and Turkey) in the total volume of imports have a share of 61.0%, which is US$9.47 billion.

As a result of large-scale reforms of the country’s foreign economic activity and strong ties with the countries of the world, the export potential of our state grows. In addition, thanks to the creation of a number of tax and customs privileges, as well as the modernization of industrial production, some of our national products began to be exported more and take up their positions in foreign markets.