Issues of deepening cooperation with KOICA discussed
Tashkent, Uzbekistan (UzDaily.com) -- On 6 July, in Seoul, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Investment and Foreign Trade (MFIT) of the Republic of Uzbekistan Sardor Umurzakov discussed with the President of the Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) Lee Mi-kyung the issues of financial and technical cooperation and its expansion in the near future.
During the dialogue, the Uzbek side noted the Agency’s significant contribution to the implementation of socially significant initiatives in Uzbekistan - since the opening of the KOICA office in the Republic, 31 projects have been implemented in the amount of US$107 million, more than 2 thousand internships for Uzbek specialists in Korea have been organized and a trip to the country has been organized. More than 500 expert volunteers in the areas of healthcare, education, information technology, utilities, agriculture and water, energy and transport visited Uzbekistan.
The active nature of the current cooperation was emphasized - currently, within the framework of the Partnership Strategy for 2016 - 2020, 7 projects are being implemented in the Republic in the amount of US$30 million, while in the second half of this year it is expected to launch 3 new projects in the amount of US$27.5 million in such priority areas as education, healthcare, water management and public administration.
In addition, thanks to the consistent joint work on the implementation of the medium-term Program for 2020-2022, signed between the MFIT and KOICA during the state visit of the President of Korea to Uzbekistan in April 2019, 5 projects worth US$45.5 million have already been approved.
In this context, a number of issues related to the successful and timely implementation of the planned projects were discussed. So, for example, in order to successfully operate the Multidisciplinary Children's Medical Center in Tashkent launched in May of this year, as well as other ongoing projects in the healthcare sector, an agreement was reached on attracting Korean specialists from grant funds.
They also discussed the prospects for implementing, in conjunction with the Korea International Health Foundation “KOFIH”, the Program for the Comprehensive Advanced Training of Medical Workers of Uzbekistan in 2021-2024, which envisages the organization of training programs in the field of quality of medical care and patient safety.
Promising mechanisms were discussed separately to accelerate the joint development of a number of other projects approved by the Agency, including the creation of a vocational training center in Urgench and the National Qualification System worth US$14 million, as well as the creation of a network of business incubators and stimulation of entrepreneurship growth in Uzbekistan worth US$5.5 million. Moreover, the emphasis will be placed not only on providing young professionals with professional education, but also on mechanisms for their further employment.
An agreement was also reached on assisting KOICA in attracting leading Korean companies to implement joint projects in Uzbekistan using advanced Korean experience and technologies.
In general, the parties, noting the importance of further deepening cooperation, came to a common opinion on the need for a gradual transition from the implementation of individual projects to the joint implementation of integrated solutions aimed at creating sustainable systems in priority areas.
Following the meeting, the parties agreed on further steps to deepen KOICA cooperation with Uzbekistan and agreed to intensify joint work in this direction.