On July 11, a ceremony of signing a loan agreement with the World Bank for a total of $500 million for the implementation of a project to modernize agriculture in Uzbekistan was held in the form of videoconferencing.
On the Uzbek side, the agreement was signed by Deputy Prime Minister – Minister of Investments and Foreign Trade Sardor Umurzakov, and on the part of the World Bank – Regional Director for Central Asia Lilia Burunciuc, the MIFT press service reported.
The project will be funded by the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the International Development Association in the amount of $276 million and $224 million, respectively.
Thanks to the project, farmers and representatives of agricultural enterprises in all regions of Uzbekistan will have access to modern technologies, technical consultations, support services for various stages of production, agrology, phytosanitary, as well as the necessary information resources to increase sales. As a result, by increasing competitiveness and increasing the export potential of local producers, their presence in the domestic and international markets will expand.
Also, thanks to the participation of local commercial banks in the project, domestic producers will have the opportunity to attract long-term credit resources, with the prospect of using them to increase export-oriented value chains, bearing in mind the development of intensive gardening, the creation of greenhouses, storage facilities for products, packaging and processing facilities, as well as the acquisition of energy and water-saving technologies and agricultural machinery.
The project will also assist in the modernization of agricultural research institutes in Uzbekistan, conducting applied research and introducing advanced developments in the industry. Project activities will focus on issues of developing seed production, managing land and water resources, introducing agroecological climate-resistant technologies focused on specific regions, as well as preserving the unique genetic materials of plants in Uzbekistan.
The volume of financial and technical assistance from the World Bank has increased significantly with the start of reforms in Uzbekistan in 2017. Today, the country program for Uzbekistan, consisting of 23 projects totaling $4.4 billion, is its largest operation in the Europe and Central Asia region after Turkey.