American-Uzbekistan Chamber of Commerce
Week in Review:
July 6, 2012 - July 13, 2012

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In This Issue:
Uzbek President receives delegation of U.S. Congress
Uzbekistan Airways launches new Boeing-767 flight simulator
CAREC Officials Discuss Cross-Border Transport Arrangements
WB provides $10.47bln to Emerging Europe and Central Asia
Uzbek-Russian trade turnover hits US$1.367bn in Jan-May
Starlinger opens new representative office in Uzbekistan

Established in 1993, the American-Uzbekistan Chamber of Commerce (AUCC) is a private, non-profit trade association representing interests of U.S. businesses ranging in size from small private enterprises to large, multinational corporations conducting business in Uzbekistan.

Our Mission: To advocate the views of the business community to ensure that private sector positions are considered during the development of key policies that impact American businesses and the future of U.S.-Uzbekistan relations.

Our Objective: To serve the needs of its members by strengthening commercial relations between the United States and Uzbekistan.

President of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov received on Friday chairman of the Subcommittee of the U.S. House of Representatives Dan Burton and congressman Gregory Meeks, who arrived on a visit to Tashkent, Uzbekistan National News Agency reported (UzA).

Welcoming the guests, the president noted that he considers visit of the U.S. Congress delegation to Uzbekistan as one of the evidences of rapid development and consistent strengthening of Uzbek-American dialogue, a good opportunity to exchange views on the status and prospects of bilateral relations and issues of regional security and stability.

During the meeting it was noted that the expanding inter-parliamentary ties are one of the key components of the cooperation between Uzbekistan and the United States and have a direct impact on the deepening of mutual understanding and trust, expansion of multi-faceted partnership in political, economic, trade, investment and humanitarian spheres, as well as in the development of democracy and formation of civil society.

During the discussion of international issues, special attention was paid to the topic of Afghanistan, the prevailing situation there and different scenarios of the developments in this country. It was emphasized that Uzbekistan participates and will participate on a bilateral basis in the construction of socio-economic and infrastructure facilities in Afghanistan, aimed at creating conditions for its peaceful revival.

The Congressmen expressed their gratitude to the head of Uzbekistan for the warm welcome and an opportunity to discuss in a constructive manner the important aspects of the bilateral agenda, relevant regional and global issues.

The meeting underlined the mutual interest in the development of Uzbek-American relations on a mutually beneficial and long-term co-operation across the spectrum. 
Uzbekistan Havo Yollari (Uzbekistan Airways), a national airline of Uzbekistan, launched new flight simulator of Boeing-767 airplane at its Educational-Training Center in Tashkent, the press service of the company said.

Virtual Procedure Trainer is produced by the US corporation Aerosim and it allows to simulate standard and non-standard situations during flight.

Instructor can set any possible conditions and parameters of flight, which will allow pilots to work through any worst-case situations.

New trainer has 11 touch-screen LCD monitors and it is based on two stations. The displays show all systems of airplane in online regime. The trainer is designed as real Boeing-767 airplane.

The airline said that currently it has A-320 airplane and Boeing-767 aircraft simulators and soon it will get simulator for Il-114-100 plane. These trainers will help to train pilots.  

Senior customs, transport, and finance officials from the 10 member countries of the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) Program reviewed cross-border transport arrangements for CAREC corridors last week at a seminar in Beijing, People's Republic of China.

The roundtable seminar reviewed existing cross-border transport arrangements, studied international good practices, and came up with practical recommendations on how to improve transport and trade procedures and processes to ease movement of people and goods.

"While good progress is being made in upgrading physical infrastructure of the six CAREC corridors, much needs to be done to address nonphysical barriers to the cross-border transport and trade along these corridors," said Asel Chyngysheva, Officer-in-Charge at the Tajikistan Resident Mission of the Asian Development Bank (ADB).

Under its Transport and Trade Facilitation Strategy, CAREC focuses on improving customs cooperation; integrating trade facilitation and developing a seamless network of six CAREC competitive transport corridors linking north, south, east, and west through Central Asia.

A study showed that in 2011, time required to clear a CAREC road border crossing point averaged 6.2 hours, compared with an average of only two hours to cross European borders. Queuing, loading and unloading were major contributors to the inefficiency.

CAREC promotes project-based cooperation in transport, energy, trade facilitation, and trade policy. The CAREC partnership comprises 10 countries - Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, the People's Republic of China, Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Mongolia, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan - and six multilateral institutions: ADB, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, International Monetary Fund, Islamic Development Bank, United Nations Development Programme, and World Bank. ADB has served as the CAREC Secretariat since 2001.

Tajikistan is an active participant and major beneficiary of the CAREC Program, receiving more than $445 million to rehabilitate road corridors from Dushanbe to the Kyrgyz border (Sarytash) and Uzbek border (Tursunzade); modernize customs infrastructure; build power transmission lines connecting Tajikistan and Afghanistan; rebuild the 500kV switchyard at Nurek Hydro Power Plant; and expand and modernize the electricity transmission system.
The World Bank Group provided US $10.47 billion in funding to governments in Emerging Europe and Central Asia (ECA) in fiscal year 2012, which ended on June 30, amid uncertainty in the Eurozone and modest growth.

"Countries in Emerging Europe and Central Asia continue to face the challenge of sustainable recovery," said Philippe Le Houérou, World Bank Vice President for the Europe and Central Asia region. "The crisis is harming the region through three main channels - finance, trade and workers' remittances. The World Bank is supporting countries in their efforts to strengthen their economic structures, providing financial support to governments to improve public services, strengthen banking systems, and protect the most vulnerable from the impact of the crisis."

The recently published Global Economic Prospects report highlights that growth in the region should slow in 2012 to 3.3 percent, assuming a resolution of the Euro Area crisis by end-2012. Bank support in ECA reached $6.6 billion this fiscal year, including $6.2 billion from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and $362 million from the International Development Association (IDA). Romania ($1.9 billion), Turkey ($1.1 billion), Kazakhstan ($1.1 billion) and Poland ($1 billion) were the largest borrowers. Lending was targeted in supporting three regional pillars: deepening reforms for improved competitiveness, supporting social sector reforms for inclusive growth, and helping countries take action for greening growth trajectories.

The International Finance Corporation (IFC) this year continued to maintain a focus on investing in strategic areas. In FY12, IFC committed $4.28 billion, including $1.3 billion in syndicated loans and other mobilization, in 114 projects across the region. In this fiscal year, IFC commitments in ECA on its own account only were $2.98 billion.

During fiscal year 2012, the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) provided support for 18 projects with $928 million in political risk insurance coverage in Europe and Central Asia.  

Trade turnover between Uzbekistan and Russia made up US$1.367 billion in January-May 2012, the Russian Federal Customs Service said.

The FCS said that trade turnover between two nations fell by 0.9% year-on-year in January-May 2012.

According to the data of Russian service, the volume of exports from Russia to Uzbekistan grew by 8.1% year-on-year to US$823.4 million in January-May 2012.

At the same time, imports of Russia from Uzbekistan decreased by 11.9% year-on-year in the reporting period to US$544 million.

Uzbekistan is the fourth largest trade partner of Russia in the CIS. Ukraine (US$18.8bn), Belarus (US$15.1bn) and Kazakhstan (US$8.2bn) claimed the first three places.

Starlinger & Co GmbH, Austrian manufacturer of machinery for woven plastic packaging production and plastics recycling, has opened a representative office in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.  

The office, opened in May 2012, is headed by Yuldosh Kazakov, who joined Starlinger in 2009 and is chief representative for the region.

The strong economic growth in Central Asia during the past years has also had a positive effect on the textile packaging industry. "Starlinger sees a strong potential for growth in this region - comparable to Russia, where seven new customers could be acquired within the last 18 months," Starlinger said in a statement.

For example, the Uzbek-Swiss joint venture Leading Force Co, was the first company in the region to purchase a production line for the patented Starlinger AD*STAR block bottom sacks in 2010. They produce 20 million AD*STAR sacks and 15 million standard sacks per year and supply bags for cement, fertiliser and flour to the respective industries in Central Asia and Russia. A second AD*STAR project has been commissioned beginning of this year in the Turkmen port city of Turkmenbashi.

The American-Uzbekistan
Chamber of Commerce
1300 I Street, N.W.,
Suite 720W
Washington, DC 20005
phone: 202.509.3744
[email protected]