19:50 / 24.10.2022

Uzbek scientist who won a WB grant of $600,000 unable to receive funds

Scientist Iskandar Abdullayev, who defended his dissertation in Japan, won a large grant from the World Bank to conduct biological research in Uzbekistan. It is said that there is a problem on the side of Uzbekistan in receiving the funds.

Фото: AP

On October 21, Iskandar Abdullayev’s mother, doctor of philosophy and political sciences, Gulsara Shermatova, posted on her Facebook page that her son Iskandar Abdullayev won a $600,000 grant from the World Bank and was unable to receive the funds. 

Allegedly, Iskandar Abdullayev won a $600,000 grant from the World Bank 3 months ago to conduct his biological research, purchase equipment and create a research team. However, the funds have not yet arrived.

Iskandar Abdullayev defended his PhD thesis in Japan, came to Uzbekistan to work and conduct research at a US research center.

According to Gulsara Shermatova, the World Bank is implementing a major project in Uzbekistan with the Ministry of Innovative Development. As part of this project, grants are being allocated to various sectors. This grant was awarded to a group at the National University.

“Therefore, the investment and foreign relations department of the Ministry of Higher and Secondary Specialized Education should deal with this matter. As far as I understand, the ministry should confirm and send the documents to the relevant department of the Central Bank. It should be converted and transferred to the account of the academic institution. But for 2.5 months, this case has been pending. In case of such a delay, the World Bank will withdraw the money. The issue of investments comes to the international political arena. These problems are related to the international rating of Uzbekistan. If this happens a couple of times, then the World Bank will stop giving grants to Uzbekistan,” the scientist’s mother said in an interview with Kun.uz.

The author of the post informed that they applied to the Ministry of Higher and Secondary Specialized Education, and the Ministry said that they do not have instructions on the use of grant funds from the Ministry of Finance. The Ministry of Finance said that it will be decided by the Ministry of Higher and Secondary Specialized Education.

Kun.uz contacted the Ministry of Higher and Secondary Specialized Education to clarify the incident. According to the Ministry, a request was sent to the WB representatives in Uzbekistan regarding the situation.

“It is not clear exactly where the problem was. This issue is under investigation. We will announce it on our official pages after it is determined. The arrival of such grants to Uzbekistan, conducting research work is also beneficial for our ministry,” a representative of the ministerial press service said.