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Uzbekistan and ADB

ADB’s country partnership strategy, 2019-2023 for Uzbekistan supports the government’s ongoing reforms to transition toward a more inclusive and market-driven economy, which can be achieved by developing a robust private sector and reducing the state’s pervasive footprint.

ADB's Work in Uzbekistan

ADB Membership

Joined 1995

Shareholding and Voting Power

Number of shares held:
71,502 (0.672% of total shares)

Votes:
110,616 (0.832% of total membership, 1.277% of total regional membership)

Overall capital subscription:
$1.03 billion

Paid-in capital subscription:
$51.50 million

Uzbekistan joined the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in 1995. Today, emboldened by a new development strategy and a comprehensive reform agenda, the country is striving for a vibrant economy led by the private sector.

In 2019, ADB approved a new country partnership strategy for Uzbekistan covering 2019–2023. This partnership strategy is aligned with the country’s national development strategy and supports the Government of Uzbekistan’s ongoing reforms to transition toward a more inclusive and market-driven economy. The government’s objectives can only be achieved by developing a robust private sector and reducing the state’s pervasive footprint. ADB will assist this transition by providing policy advice, investments, and capacity-building projects that support private sector development, reduce economic and social disparities, and promote regional cooperation and integration.

Since 1995, ADB has committed loans, grants, and technical assistance amounting to $10.1 billion for Uzbekistan.

Bibi-Khanym Mosque is a famous historical site in Samarkand, Uzbekistan.

Cumulative loan disbursements to Uzbekistan amount to $6.07 billion. These were financed by regular and concessional ordinary capital resources.


ADB-Supported Projects and Programs

In 2020, ADB committed six projects and programs, and one grant totaling $1.1 billion for Uzbekistan.

To help fight the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, ADB funded the government’s comprehensive plan to strengthen the country’s health care system and support small and medium-sized enterprises. The bank provided a $500 million loan under its COVID-19 Active Response and Expenditure Support Program for procuring medical supplies and equipment, preparing additional hospitals and laboratories, supporting businesses and minimizing job losses, and expanding social protection. To urgently increase Uzbekistan’s resilience to COVID-19 and other pandemics, ADB approved a $100 million loan for the COVID-19 Emergency Response Project to expand coronavirus testing, implement a national surveillance and monitoring system for laboratories, and extend the country’s treatment capacity in emergency situations. ADB also provided a $3 million grant from its Asia Pacific Disaster Response Fund to procure essential medicines and medical consumables, including personal protective equipment.

In energy, ADB has supported construction of combined cycle gas turbine units at the Talimarjan and Takhiatash power plants, and is helping construct a high-voltage transmission line in the northwest of the country to strengthen the electricity grid. The bank is also helping the national electricity company improve its financial sustainability via advanced metering. In August 2020, the government launched an ADB-funded smart metering data center to process electricity consumption and billing information from 7 million consumers across the country.

ADB has been financing road and railway projects along the Central Asian Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) Corridors 2 and 6, and helped reconstruct a highway between Guzar and Daut-ata on the border of CAREC Corridor 2. Under a loan approved in 2020, ADB will reconstruct 240 kilometers of the Guzar–Bukhara–Nukus–Beyneu highway in the western part of Uzbekistan, the region’s key trade route. The bank has also helped rehabilitate and electrify rail lines, modernize the Karshi rail depot, and procure 24 additional electric locomotives for cleaner and more reliable passenger and freight services.

ADB is working to provide safe water to 388,000 inhabitants in 116 rural settlements across Karakalpakstan and 220,000 people in the Yangiyul and Chinaz districts of Tashkent province. It is also supporting the expansion of the sewerage system in Djizzak city and the construction of a new potable water treatment plant in Tashkent province.

ADB is helping Uzbekistan boost the efficiency of its electricity supply by building an 800-megawatt combined cycle gas turbine power plant in Talimarjan, Uzbekistan.

While an ADB-supported program is building 29,000 affordable dwellings across nine regions, the bank is also financing the Mortgage Market Sector Development Program to help the government improve its housing finance programs and ensure that long-term funding for market-based residential mortgage credit can be provided through the banking sector.

Ongoing public–private partnerships supported by ADB include solar power development, district heating modernization, rehabilitation of public schools, and improved municipal water and sanitation infrastructure.

To support regional cooperation under the CAREC Program, ADB helped finance power lines to supply electricity to Afghanistan and extend the Afghan railroad to the Uzbekistan border.

Under the CAREC Program, roads and railway systems have been constructed and improved.

Nonsovereign Operations

As a catalyst for private investments, ADB provides financial assistance to nonsovereign projects and financial intermediaries. Total commitments in loans and equity investments from ADB’s own funds in 2020 amounted to $1.4 billion for 38 transactions in economic and social infrastructure, finance sector, and agribusiness. ADB also actively mobilizes cofinancing from commercial and concessional sources. In 2020, ADB mobilized $1.9 billion of long-term project cofinancing and $3.3 billion of cofinancing through its Trade and Supply Chain Finance Program and Microfinance Program. Total outstanding balances and commitments of nonsovereign transactions funded by ADB’s own resources stood at $14.3 billion as of 31 December 2020.

In 2020, commitments from ADB’s own funds amounted to $13 million for the Navoi solar power project in Uzbekistan. Total outstanding balances and commitments of ADB’s nonsovereign transactions in the country as of 31 December 2020 was $226.8 million representing 2% of ADB’s total nonsovereign portfolio.

Financing Partnerships

Financing partnerships enable ADB’s financing partners, governments or their agencies, multilateral financing institutions, and commercial organizations to participate in financing ADB projects. The additional funds are provided in the form of loans and grants, technical assistance, and other nonsovereign cofinancing such as B loans, risk transfer arrangements, parallel loans and equity, guarantee cofinancing, and cofinancing for transactions under ADB’s Trade and Supply Chain Finance Program and Microfinance Program.

ADB began cofinancing operations in Uzbekistan in 2000. Since then, sovereign cofinancing commitments for Uzbekistan have amounted to $2.85 billion for 18 investment projects and $18.28 million for 22 technical assistance projects. Nonsovereign cofinancing for Uzbekistan has amounted to $3.35 billion for five investment projects.

In 2020, Uzbekistan received $100 million loan cofinancing from the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank for the COVID-19 Emergency Response Project, and $168.84 million loan cofinancing from the Agence Française de Développement for the Power Sector Reform Program— Subprogram 1.

ADB’s first results-based loan to Uzbekistan for the Affordable Rural Housing Program is cofinanced by the Islamic Development Bank. The Power Efficiency Improvement Project is cofinanced by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, while the Economic Management Improvement Program is cofinanced by AFD and the World Bank. The Talimarjan Power Project was implemented with cofinancing from the Japan International Cooperation Agency and coordinated support from the World Bank. The CAREC Corridor 2 Road Investment Program is supported by cofinancing from the Islamic Development Bank. The CAREC Corridor 6 Railway Electrification Project (Marakand-Karshi) and the Amu Bukhara Irrigation System Rehabilitation Project are being implemented with coordinated development assistance from the Japan International Cooperation Agency.

A summary of cofinanced projects is available at Uzbekistan: Cofinancing.

ADB has fostered development of small and medium-sized enterprises.

Operational Challenges

ADB and the Government of Uzbekistan are working closely to strengthen the country’s environmental and social safeguards systems; ensure compliance with standard ADB practices in procurement, financial management, and integrity and anticorruption initiatives; and incorporate gender equality measures into relevant development projects. Regular portfolio reviews have enabled quick decisions and actions to address implementation issues. Project performance is being improved by strengthening the capacity of executing and implementing agencies.

ADB will continue taking steps to strengthen policy and sector coordination. It will provide assistance to line ministries on sector strategic planning and project preparation, build capacity in new project design and implementation, streamline project readiness processes, and improve procurement and consultant recruitment protocols.

Future Directions

ADB supports Uzbekistan’s movement toward a vibrant and inclusive market economy, and transformation of the state’s role under its country partnership strategy.

The bank will continue improving urban development, enhancing water supply and sanitation, rehabilitating roads, and electrifying railway lines. It will also improve access to finance for small and medium-sized enterprises, particularly those owned or led by women, and develop mortgage and capital markets. ADB will strive to enhance youth employability through its projects in skills development and science technology, engineering and math in secondary education schools. It will support agriculture diversification and climate adaptive water resource management, while promoting regional power trade within the Central Asian Power System and regional connectivity with other CAREC countries.

Through public–private partnerships, ADB will help create a more conducive environment for private enterprises in Uzbekistan. The bank will also assist key state-owned companies to improve their financial management, governance, and transformation.

This article was originally published in the ADB and Uzbekistan: Fact Sheet. Updated yearly, this ADB Fact Sheet provides concise information on ADB's operations in the country and contact information.

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