By Abdul Kerimkhanov
Minister of Investment and Foreign Trade of Uzbekistan Sardor Umurzakov and U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur L.Ross have discussed the current state of mutual trade and mechanisms to boost trade between the two countries.
During the meeting held in Washington on October 22, the sides recognized the need for regular interaction at the inter-ministerial level to expedite the resolution of existing issues and remove barriers to investment and trade and economic cooperation.
The Uzbek minister proposed to intensify mutual trade by increasing the export of Uzbekistan to the U.S. by 60 items of commodity nomenclature totaling $1.5 billion.
In addition, a list of export-oriented products indicating volumes was presented to the leadership of the U.S. Department of Commerce in order to further develop trade agreements and contracts.
The U.S. side expressed readiness to carefully study the need of the American market for the goods offered for sale and to assist in bringing Uzbek producers to the U.S. market.
As part of the meeting, a proposal was announced to increase the level of trade and economic cooperation between the Central Asian region countries and the U.S. by organizing a platform for interstate cooperation at the ministerial level in the “C5 + 1” format - with the participation of ministers responsible for foreign economic and foreign trade activities.
U.S. support for Uzbekistan’s entry into the WTO was also discussed during the meeting.
Following the meeting, the sided decided to create an inter-ministerial working group, consisting of high-level experts from the Ministry of Investment and Foreign Trade of Uzbekistan and the U.S. Department of Commerce, with the aim of ensuring constant joint work to intensify mutual trade and promptly resolve issues.
Diplomatic relations between the United States and Uzbekistan were established on February 19, 1992.
Thanks to active cooperation with American companies, two countries managed to increase the bilateral trade by almost two times and bring it to $332 million in January-September 2018.
Currently, more than 200 enterprises with the participation of U.S. companies are successfully operating in Uzbekistan.
Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94
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