Germany to invest $2.8 billion in Uzbekistan
By Sara Rajabova
Uzbekistan has inked a package worth $2.8 billion in investment and loan agreements, and trade contracts with Germany, which is considered as Tashkent’s most important partner in the European Union.
The agreements and contracts have been concluded during a visit of the Uzbek delegation to Germany, according to a message from Uzbekistan’s Foreign Economic Relations, Investments and Trade Ministry.
The package of agreements and contracts covers the chemical, machine building, electro-technical, textile and food industries, as well as the production of construction materials.
The ministry said Uzbekistan’s delegation, led by Rustam Azimov, the first deputy prime minister and finance minister took part in the first meeting of the Germany-Uzbekistan business council, held in Berlin on February 25.
The German-Uzbek Business Council founded by over 50 leading companies and banks of Germany, including MAN, Airbus, Claas, Knauf, Lemken, ThyssenKrupp, Commerzbank, Deutsche Kabel and others. Over 250 representatives of leading German industrial companies and banks attended the first session of the Council.
Uzbekistan’s program for structural reforms, modernization and diversification of industry in the country in the coming years, and the infrastructure development program presented at the meeting caused great interest among German companies.
The representatives of the German government and business circles highlighted the dynamic developments in Uzbekistan’s economy, the deep structural reforms, the creation of new high-tech industry sectors, and setting a favorable investment climate and opportunities for successful investment activity.
“The government and leading companies of Germany are going to actively support the work of the German-Uzbek Business Council and expand their own participation in Uzbekistan,” the Uzbek ministry of foreign economic relations, investments and trade said.
The Uzbek delegation also studied the experience of the largest concerns and companies of Germany in the corporate management sphere.
The government and leading companies from Germany are going to actively support the work of the German-Uzbek business Council and to expand its presence in Uzbekistan. Representatives of major corporations and companies of Germany emphasized the enormous potential for the expansion of investment, trade and financial ties between Uzbekistan and Germany.
Moreover, a cooperation agreement was signed with the European Institute of Management and Technology during the Uzbek delegation’s visit. This agreement envisages the organization of short-term courses in Tashkent in the sphere of corporate management for the heads and specialists of the country’s enterprises, as well as their subsequent training in Germany's largest joint-stock companies.
Germany and Uzbekistan have maintained close and trustful relations for more than twenty years. Uzbekistan looks on Germany as its most important partner in the European Union. It is among the top the three trade partners of the country in Europe. Cooperation encompasses a whole range of areas within society.
Investment projects totaling over 1 billion euro have been implemented in Uzbekistan jointly with the leading German companies.
German companies’ interest in Uzbekistan focuses mainly on trade and less on investment. The Uzbek government is seeking to improve the investment climate. Major investors include MAN, Knauf and Claas. Some 70 German companies operate in Uzbekistan, according to Federal Foreign Office.
The trade turnover between Uzbekistan and Germany increased by 10 percent in 2014, compared to 2013 and stood at 461.2 million euros, according to German embassy.
Around 123 enterprises, created with the participation of leading companies, capital and advanced technologies from Germany, operate in Uzbekistan.