Russia’s business circles are ready to intensify an influx of investments in the Uzbek economy and they are interested in taking part in privatisation processes in the republic.
Co-chairman of the Russia-Uzbek Business Council, chairman of the Council of the Union of Oil and Gas Industrialists of Russia Yuri Shafranik said in an exclusive interview with ITAR-TASS.
He is leaving with a delegation of businessmen for Uzbekistan on Monday to participate in the events on the occasion of the Day of Russia.
Yuri Shafranik, who headed a profile committee of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Russia and the Supreme Mining Council of Russia, said that "our states’ potential creates huge possibilities for cooperation."
"The bilateral commodity turnover last year increased by 42% as against 2005, exceeding the sum of three billion dollars," he said, holding Gazprom up as an example that increased the volume of purchases of gas in Uzbekistan in the current year from last year’s nine billion cubic metres to 13 billion cubic metres.
According to Shafranik, "Uzbekistan is taking measures to create conditions for attracting foreign capital to its economy." Thus, as he recalled, Uzbek President Islam Karimov described the all possible strengthening of work on attracting foreign investments as one of the priorities in the development of the country’s economy.
At present, according to data of the Russian-Uzbek Business Council, "Russian companies’ accumulated investments in the fuel and energy complex of Uzbekistan amount to US$2.5 billion." The development of one of the biggest gas projects of the "Kandym-Khauzak-Shady-Kungrad"series alone is estimated at one billion US dollars.
Uzbekistan, as he notes, "is surely beginning another stage of its development, creating objective prerequisites for a new quality transition and forming firm world outlook positions." As a whole, according to Shafranik, "this is testifies to the country’s ability to directly begin developing integration processes with Russia and in the whole region."
"For our part, we, in the Council, will make efforts to intensify the process of influx of Russian investments in the Uzbek economy at the level of small and medium entrepreneurship, as well as the involvement of Russian capital in privatisation processes of the republic," he went on to say.
"Our countries have great opportunities not only to increase commodity turnover, but to create joint ventures, organize productions, exchange labour, intellectual and technological resources as well," Shafranik stressed.