Tashkent with Washington and Moscow discuss collaboration

Further development of an Uzbek-American dialogue covering the progress in implementing bilateral agreements in various fields were recently discussed by the U.S. Ambassador to Uzbekistan George Krol and Uzbek Foreign Ministry, the Foreign Ministry reported on Friday. 


The meeting marked the priority of implementing the agreements reached during annual political consultations, as well as the business forum with the participation of leading U.S. and Uzbek company representatives, held in Tashkent in August.


Previously, it was reported that a broad range of bilateral issues was discussed during the third round of Uzbek-US political consultations. In particular, the current state and prospects of bilateral relations in areas such as regular contact between foreign ministries, parliamentary relations and a diversified exchange at the international level and among civil society representatives in both countries


The sides also exchanged views on the development of the situation in Afghanistan and other issues of security and stability provision in Central Asia.


During the third round of the Uzbek-American political consultations, a business forum of Uzbek-U.S. business circles was held.


As a result, agreements were reached on the implementation of 21 projects totalling about $2.8 billion in sectors such as mechanical engineering, metal processing, energy, oil and gas production, electrical and mining industry, pharmaceuticals and food production supply.


The legal framework between the two countries currently consists of more than 60 intergovernmental and interagency agreements. Some 241 enterprises created with the participation of U.S. investors are registered in Uzbekistan and representatives of 64 American companies are accredited at the Uzbek Ministry of Foreign Economic Relations, Investments and Trade.


The volume of U.S. companies' accumulated direct investments exceeded two billion dollars. In 2011, bilateral trade turnover amounted to $249.9 million.


During the 14th meeting of the bilateral intergovernmental commission on economic cooperation which recently took place in Tashkent, Uzbekistan and Russia discussed a wide range of bilateral issues including the current state and prospects of trade, economic and investment cooperation and further expanding the legal framework.


This was said in a report of the Uzbek Ministry for Foreign Economic Relations Investment and Trade on Friday.


In particular, both sides discussed issues of further broadening relations in areas such as trade, investment, fuel and energy, automobile industry, air transport, environment, increasing the number of joint ventures, volume of bilateral trade, joint development and implementation of mutually beneficial projects.


Russia keeps a stable position as Uzbekistan's largest trading partner. In 2011, turnover between the countries amounted to $6.688 billion, in January-September this year it hit $5.58 billion.


There are 858 enterprises with Russian capital in Uzbekistan, including 716 joint ventures and 142 foreign companies with 100 per cent Russian capital. Russia has set up 473 enterprises with Uzbek residents.


The most important area of bilateral economic cooperation in recent years is the energy industry where cooperation with leading Russian companies is long term and mutually beneficial.


In particular, projects are underway with the Lukoil Company under the three PSAs on the development of oil and gas fields in South West Gissar and the Ustyurt region, the Kandym group fields and the Khauzak-Shady and Kungrad areas, as well as in the water area of the Aral Sea, with a total amount of investments standing at more than two billion dollars.


The Gazprom Company is involved in the project on a geological study of the Ustyurt region's fields with an investment volume of around $380 million.


The meeting was attended by representatives of ministries, departments and companies of the two countries working in the field of foreign economic relations, trade, investment, customs, transport and communications, automobile industry, aviation, agriculture and water, light industry, research and education, culture, health, environment, banking and financial system, oil and gas industry.


The co-chairs of the commission are Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak and First Deputy Prime Minister of Uzbekistan Rustam Azimov. To date, the commission has held 13 bilateral meetings.


World media monitoring