American-Uzbekistan Chamber of Commerce
BUSINESS NEWSLETTER
  
Week in Review:
 
October 30, 2015 - November 6, 2015
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Dear AUCC Members and Friends:

 

We would like to express our gratitude to all AUCC members who, through all these years, have proven to be Uzbekistan's true allies and have been nothing but dedicated, reliable, honest and most conscientious business partners inspired to expand the bilateral relationship, business climate and promote development to enhance the lives of the people of Uzbekistan and the US.  

 

Our companies recognize that despite the global economic slowdown, Uzbekistan has managed to secure successfully greater macroeconomic stability and growth.  We applaud the Government of Uzbekistan for their continuous process to improve the operating business environment that US companies benefit from and fiscal discipline that has enhanced economic growth.  We greatly appreciate our own US Government for their continuous dialogue with their Uzbek counterparts on how to use trade and investment engagement as a pillar of the bilateral relations.

 

We stand ready to use our business acumen to facilitate the Uzbek and US Governments' efforts to attract more American companies and helping those who are already here generate even more success stories for the world to hear. We hope for the US and Uzbek Governments' support in helping us multiply our achievements and generate more projects and contracts that will make our nations achieve greater prosperity, stability and higher rates of development. 

 

Happy Holidays!  May 2015 bring greater prosperity to the American and Uzbek people. 

 

Sincerely, 

 

Carolyn Lamm, AUCC Chairperson

Timothy McGraw, AUCC President

 

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

 

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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.
October 30, 2015

Today, the World Bank Group hosted the regional launch of Doing Business 2016: Measuring Regulatory Quality and Efficiency in Central Asia. In this year's report, Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, implemented a total of 14 reforms in 9 of the 10 indicators included in the ease of doing business ranking.
Almaty, Astana, Bishkek, Dushanbe, and Tashkent were connected by video link for a presentation and discussion of the 2016 results in improving the business climate in Central Asia. The representatives of the governments, business community, academia, development agencies and media discussed the role of a good business environment in attracting investment, supporting entrepreneurship, and generating jobs.
Kazakhstan, with a global ranking of 41, was one of this year's top 10 improvers. The country implemented the most reforms globally with a total of 7 in the following areas: Starting a Business, Dealing with Construction Permits, Registering Property, Getting Credit, Protecting Minority Investors, Enforcing Contracts, and Resolving Insolvency. Most notable improvements took place in Starting a Business by elimination of company seal, registration fee and decrease of registration time and in Protecting Minority Investors by increasing transparency of related-party transactions, providing more ways of collecting evidence for trials, limiting possibilities to change shareholders' rights and increasing transparency of information about board member's affiliations.
The Kyrgyz Republic, with a global ranking of 67, implemented two reforms in areas measured by Doing Business. The economy eased the process of property registration by introducing a widely used online procedure for obtaining the non-encumbrance certificates and improved access to credit information.
Tajikistan improved by 6 positions compared to last year's adjusted ranking, moving from 138 to 132. This improvement was due in part to reforms in the areas of Paying Taxes and Trade across Borders. Also, Tajikistan made trading across borders easier by making it possible to submit customs declarations electronically.
Uzbekistan, with a global ranking of 87, was also one of the top 10 improvers in this year's report. It made starting a business easier by introducing an online one-stop shop and streamlining registration procedures. The country also improved access to credit by adopting new laws on secured transactions that allow a general description of assets granted as collateral and established a modern, unified, notice-based collateral registry. Finally, it also made transferring property easier by eliminating the requirement to provide several different nonencumbrance certificates.
"This was a very strong year for Central Asia as every country in the region moved closer to the frontier of good regulatory practice by introducing two or more reforms," said Saroj Kumar Jha, World Bank Regional Director for Central Asia. "For instance, a decade ago it took a local entrepreneur in the region on average 276 days to start a business. Now, it takes on average 8 days in the region - 5 in Kazakhstan, 10 in Kyrgyz Republic, 11 in Tajikistan, and 6.5 days in Uzbekistan - which compares with average among high-income Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) economies."
At the same time, the report highlights areas where the countries of Central Asia continue to lag behind the rest of Europe and Central Asia, particularly in the new indicators added in the latest edition measuring the quality of regulation. The average scores of the four countries in Central Asia on three of the four new quality indexes - the quality of land administration, reliability of supply and transparency of energy, and the quality of judicial processes - were lower than the average of the region, suggesting that while reforms are progressing, focus needs to remain on the quality of implementation on the ground. Only in the building quality control index of the Dealing with Construction Permits indicator did the four countries in Central Asia score slightly above the regional average.
The full report and accompanying datasets are available at http://www.doingbusiness.org/. 

November 5, 2015

Uzbekistan plans to attract foreign investors to its leading enterprises included in the state program on privatization, and to modernize the production in order to ensure the competitiveness of its production on the domestic and foreign markets.
For these purposes, it is planned to carry out the International Investment Forum, which will be held in Tashkent on November 5-6, 2015.
The forum will allow foreign investors to establish mutually beneficial business contacts, to open up new growth opportunities on the promising and fast-growing market of Uzbekistan.
As many as 40 bilateral agreements, contracts and other documents on the implementation of joint investment projects are planned to be signed within the forum.
The program of the event includes the plenary sessions, speeches of major foreign investors about the experience of doing business in Uzbekistan, meetings dedicated to the various sectors of the economy with the presentation of specific sites of privatization, visits to the companies.
More than 560 foreign business executives, who represent over 250 companies, economic associations and financial institutions from 33 countries, have confirmed participation in the forum.
Members of the government, heads of ministries and departments of Uzbekistan, official foreign delegations, heads of major foreign companies, investment funds and banks, as well as international financial institutions: the World Bank (WB), the International Finance Corporation (IFC), Asian Development Bank (ADB) and others will attend the forum.
Earlier, Uzbek President Islam Karimov approved a list of 68 companies, which state-owned assets will be put on sale to the foreign investors.
The list includes 49 percent of the shares of Navoiazot JSC, 48.05 percent of shares of Ferghanaazot JSC, 49 percent of shares of two newly created agricultural engineering enterprises, 35.9 percent of shares of Kyzylkumcement JSC, controlling stakes of two banks and 60 percent of shares of the Investstroy construction company.

November 4, 2015 

South Korea is seeking to expand investment in Uzbekistan as the Central Asian country moves to privatize state-run enterprises, the government said Wednesday.
According to the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, a delegation of government officials and businessmen will visit Tashkent on Friday to take part in an international investment forum.
The forum will outline Uzbekistan's effort to privatize 68 state-run enterprises in the chemical, oil and gas and electricity fields. Foreign companies and international financial institutions like the World Bank and Asian Development Bank have been invited to attend the gathering.
Trade and Industry Vice Minister Lee Kwan-sup will head the South Korean delegation and will be accompanied by executives from 20 companies including those from Hyundai Engineering Co., Korea Gas Corp., and Lotte Chemical Corp., the ministry said.
These local companies have expressed interest in investing in Uzbekistan, which is South Korea's largest trading partner in Central Asia.
The ministry said Lee will ask Tashkent to extend more support so South Korean companies can invest in the country.
He will also outline the advantages of linking Uzbekistan's foreign investment with Seoul's ambitious "Eurasia Initiative" that aims to bind Eurasian nations closely together by linking roads and railways that run from South Korea to Europe via North Korea, Russia and China.
The senior official is expected to meet with Elyor Ganiev, the minister for foreign economic relations on Thursday, to discuss details of the US$4 billion methanol-to-olefins plant building project. South Korean companies are currently involved in the project that aims to use natural gas to make chemical products.
In addition, Lee will request greater support for South Korean companies wanting to take part in the 100 megawatt Samarkand solar power project.
Besides the meeting, the vice minister plans to hold talks with South Korean companies operating in country to get feedback on such matters as currency exchange, repatriation of earnings and customs inspections.


CONTACT INFORMATION:aucc logo
The American-Uzbekistan
Chamber of Commerce
 
1030 15th Street, N.W.,
Suite 555W
 
Washington, DC 20005
 
phone: 202.509.3744
 
[email protected]

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