American-Uzbekistan Chamber of Commerce
BUSINESS NEWSLETTER
  
Week in Review:

October 25, 2013 - November 1, 2013
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2013 Marks AUCC 20th Anniversary

Since 1993 the American-Uzbekistan Chamber of Commerce has been at the forefront of advancing trade and business relations between the US and the Republic of Uzbekistan. AUCC prides itself in catering to the needs of our members, providing them with a platform to interact with policy makers in the US and the Republic of Uzbekistan and ensuring that bilateral commercial relations continue to be on the governments' top agenda.   

 

For the last twenty years AUCC has been a vigorous advocate of the views of the business community to ensure that private sector positions are considered during the development of policies that impact American businesses and the future of U.S.-Uzbekistan relations.    

 

We are delighted that today AUCC is a well-known organization that is recognized for its strength and ability to work closely with a great number of partner organizations. AUCC enjoys excellent working relations with the Embassy of the Republic of Uzbekistan in Washington, D.C., the Government of the Republic of Uzbekistan, Uzbek ministries, associations and organizations as well as the executive and legislative branches of the U.S. AUCC also coordinates its efforts with a great number of international financial institutions, business councils and other professional organizations.

If your company is interested in joining AUCC, please contact our office at 202-509-3744 or info@aucconline.com.  We invite you to be part of our organization and participate in our activities and events.   

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In This Issue:
AUCC IN BRIEF
Europe and Central Asia Second to OECD in Implementing Good Business Regulatory Practices
Uzbekistan moves 10 places up in Doing Business ranking
LUKOIL Uzbekistan starts to implement project "Early gas at Kandym"
Draft Budget Code discussed 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.

worldbank.org  

 

October 29, 2013

 

A new World Bank Group report finds that the pace of regulatory reform in Europe and Central Asia remains strong, with 19 economies implementing 65 reforms to improve business regulation in the past year.

Doing Business 2014: Understanding Regulations for Small and Medium-Size Enterprises shows that efforts to strengthen legal institutions and reduce the complexity and cost of regulatory processes have paid off for entrepreneurs in Europe and Central Asia. The region has overtaken East Asia and the Pacific as the second most business-friendly after the high-income economies in the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

The report finds that since 2009, 92 percent of economies in Europe and Central Asia have improved their process for starting a business, a higher share than in any other region. Thanks to these efforts, today it is the easiest region for business entry, ahead of the OECD high-income economies. In response to the financial crisis, 73 percent of the region's economies reformed insolvency proceedings over the same period, and 85 percent made it easier to pay taxes.

"Joining the European Union (EU) in 2004 was a great motivator for some economies in the region," said Augusto Lopez-Claros, Director, Global Indicators and Analysis, World Bank Group. "Our report finds that these economies have continued on a path of comprehensive and ambitious economic and institutional reform even after EU entry, ensuring that they could compete with their more developed high-income partners. Beyond that, the report finds that there is encouraging news across Europe and Central Asia. Of the 20 economies narrowing the gap with better business regulatory practices the most since 2009, nine are in the region: Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Kosovo, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Moldova, Poland, the Russian Federation, and Ukraine."

Bulgaria keeps its position and is ranked 58 on ease of doing business out of 189 countries this year. Last year ranking was 57 out of 185 economies.

The Russian Federation was among the global top 10 improvers in the past year, with reforms in five areas tracked by Doing Business. Builders dealing with the permitting process in Moscow now face fewer delays, more streamlined approvals, and lower fees thanks to the adoption of the national urban planning code and a time limit for registering new buildings.

Poland continues to make regulations more business-friendly and in this year's report is at 45 in the global ranking of 189 economies on the ease of doing business. In the past year the government simplified business registration and construction permitting.

Croatia improved in five areas. In the area of trading across borders, for example, the government invested in improvements at the port of Rijeka and streamlined export customs procedures in preparation for accession to the EU Common Transit Convention.

Singapore tops the global ranking on the ease of doing business. Joining it on the list of the top 10 economies with the most business-friendly regulations are Hong Kong SAR, China; New Zealand; the United States; Denmark; Malaysia; the Republic of Korea; Georgia; Norway; and the United Kingdom.

In addition to the global rankings, every year Doing Business reports the economies that have improved the most on the indicators since the previous year. The 10 economies topping that list this year are (in order of improvement) Ukraine, Rwanda, the Russian Federation, the Philippines, Kosovo, Djibouti, Côte d'Ivoire, Burundi, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, and Guatemala. Yet challenges persist: five of this year's top improvers-Burundi, Côte d'Ivoire, Djibouti, the Philippines, and Ukraine-are still in the bottom half of the global ranking on the ease of doing business. [Read more here].

uzdaily.com  

 

October 29, 2013

 

Uzbekistan significantly improved its position in new ranking of Doing Business-2014 of the World Bank and International Financial Corporation, moving from 156th place in 2012 to 146th place in 2013.

Ukraine, Rwanda, the Russian Federation, the Philippines, Kosovo, Djibouti, Côte d'Ivoire, Burundi, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, and Guatemala are among the economies improving the most in 2012/13 in areas tracked by Doing Business.

Worldwide, 114 economies implemented 238 regulatory reforms in 2012/13 making it easier to do business as measured by Doing Business - 18% more reforms than in the previous year.

According to the report, Uzbekistan improved its ranking in such criteria as business registration (21st place, + 66 positions), permission for construction (59th place, +1 position), property registration (136th place, +6), crediting (130th place, +24), and international trade (189th place, no change).

At the same time, Uzbekistan worsened its position on such criteria as connection to electricity (173, -4), taxation (168, -3) and investor protection (138, -1).

The report said that Uzbekistan made starting a business easier by abolishing the paid-in minimum capital requirement and by eliminating the requirement to have signature samples notarized before opening a bank account.

The report added that four procedures required in Uzbekistan to register enterprise, which is less than average in the Europe and Central Asia (5) and OECD member states (5). The registration term is 8.5 days in Uzbekistan against 12.8 days in Europe and Central Asia and 11.1 days in the OECD countries.

Singapore topped the global ranking on the ease of doing business. Joining it on the list of the top 10 economies with the most business-friendly regulatory environments are Hong Kong SAR, China; New Zealand; the United States; Denmark; Malaysia; the Republic of Korea; Georgia; Norway; and the United Kingdom. [Read Uzbekistan Report here].

uzdaily.com  

 

November 1, 2013

 

LUKOIL Uzbekistan started to implement a project "Early gas at Kandym". In the primary stage of exploitation of fields, it is planned to mine and supply 2.2 billion cubic meters of gas a year to Mubarek gas processing plant, the company's press service said.

LUKOIL Uzbekistan said it started to implement the project "Early gas at Kandym Groups of fields and construction of northern part of Shady field".

The project is implemented in line with the presidential resolution "On additional measures on complex construction of Kandym Groups of fields within the realization of product sharing agreement" and on the bases of the agreement on product sharing with Uzbekistan.

The project concept envisages gas production at Kuchachi-Alat field and preliminary preparation of gas at facility on preliminary gas processing Kuvachi; transport gas via pipeline with the length of 60km to the facility on preliminary gas processing Northern Shady, mine and preliminary prepare gas, received from Northern Shady field to facility on preliminary gas processing Northern Shady; transport gas from facility on preliminary gas processing Northern Shady to connection of gas pipeline Dengizkul-Mubarek gas processing plant and further to Dengizkul booster compression station.

Within he first stage of the project, it is planned to construct 12 wells at Kuvachi-Alat field, nine wells at Northern Shady field, construct gas pipeline with the length of 130 km, construction of two facilities on preliminary gas preparation, construction of 170 km road, reconstruction of 20 km road from Northern Shady to Dengizkul booster compression station, construction of 150 km of power supply lines, construction of power substation at Kuvachi-Alat field, construction of 13 bridges and passes over existing channels, etc.

All construction works will be conducted in line with the legislation of Uzbekistan, including legislation on protection of ecology and nature protection.

LUKOIL Uzbekistan said that it will use modern materials and equipment at construction process. The project will allow to fully use existing capacities of Mubarak gas processing plant. Construction of roads, bridges and passes will improve transport infrastructure of Karakul and Alat districts of Bukhara region.

In the second quarter of the project, which will be launched in the second half of 2014, it is planned to construct booster compression station at Kuvachi-Alat and Northern Shady to ensure technical requirements on pressure and transportation of gas. It is also planned to launch additional capacities at the fields, including to drill new wells and their construction.

trend.az  

 

October 28, 2013

 

The bill "On approval of the Budget Code of the Republic of Uzbekistan" is being discussed in the Legislative Chamber of the Oliy Majlis (lower house of the Uzbek parliament), the introduction of which is scheduled for January 2014, the information service of the lower house of the Uzbek parliament said .

According to the information service, members of the Legislative Chamber conceptually supported the bill in the first reading.

The main aim in preparing this bill is to work out a single legislative act regulating the budget process and allowing to eliminate the existing contradictions in practice and outdated norms, as well as systematization of norms, provisions, authorities of participants of the budget process already operating in practice.

Currently the main laws regulating the budget process in Uzbekistan are the law "On budget system" and the law "On treasury execution of the State Budget".

In addition, the issues of preparation, review and execution of the state budget are regulated by over 50 normative legal acts which lead to the inconvenience of the legislative base and complicate the regulation of the state finances system.

The Budget Code is designed to systematize the legislative acts and to form a uniform legal framework of the budget process, to bring the budget legislation in line with international norms and rules.

The Budget Code will also increase the self-reliance and responsibility of all levels of the state power, as well as ensure the effectiveness and transparency of governing the state finances.

The draft Budget Code reflected the ongoing reforms in the financial system, including switching to treasury execution of the budget, the introduction of a new budget classification, program budgeting, accounting and reporting, methods consistent with international practice on prognosis and ensuring the execution of the budget were improved.


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