Uzbekistan’s total external debt has increased by 2.8 percent ($692 million) since the beginning of 2020.
The total external debt of Uzbekistan has increased by 2.8 percent ($692 million) since the beginning of 2020, and, as of April 1, amounts to $25.1 billion, the Central Bank reports.
As noted, public external debt continued its upward trend in the first quarter of 2020. This process can be explained by the attraction of new debts to mitigate the social and economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis, as well as to finance State programs for the development of regions and sectors of the economy.
Public sector debt grew by $385 million during the first quarter of 2020. In addition, against the backdrop of the global pandemic, the value of Uzbekistan’s sovereign bonds has declined as a result of declining stock market prices.
As a result of the increase in debt by banks and enterprises in other sectors of the economy, private sector debt rose to $307 million.
In the first quarter of 2020, the private sector attracted debt in the total amount of $566 million. The debt was raised mainly by banks – $451 million, by enterprises in the textile sector – $36 million, and by other sectors of the economy – $74 million.
To remind, recently, there was a meeting of the “Discussion Club”, which was established by the economic block of the government as a new platform for exchanging views on various issues, to inform the public about future plans. In the first meeting, the regional director of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Eric Livny, expressed confidence in Uzbekistan’s potential to overcome the crisis.
“Pre-crisis growth rates were very impressive. Uzbekistan is the only country in Central Asia in our portfolio and its economy is projected to grow in 2020 and completely recover in 2021. Obviously, if you take the debt at an average rate of 2.4 percent and achieve economic growth of 6.5 or 7 percent, then there is no reason for concern,” said Eric Livny.