Meetings organized by the embassies
The investment and export potential of Uzbekistan was presented at events in the diplomatic missions of our country abroad.
The conference "Perspectives of Uzbekistan in the fields of export, import and investment" in Vicenza was initiated by the Embassy in Italy, the Italy-Uzbekistan Chamber of Commerce and the local branch of the Confederation of Italian Industry Confindustria with the assistance of Intesa Sanpaolo Bank. The event was broadcast to over 1,600 members of the confederation and other companies.
Our country's ambassador to Italy Otabek Akbarov spoke about reforms, investment climate, relations between the two states and the potential for expanding ties. Industries with great investment and export potential include oil and gas, mining, metallurgical, chemical, agro-industrial and light industries, tourism, transport and logistics.
Luigi Iperti, President of the Italy-Uzbekistan Chamber of Commerce, described the results of our country in attracting investors, increasing foreign trade turnover, introducing modern technologies and diversifying agriculture. He named the republic's well-educated population, rich natural resources, low energy prices and an interest in high technologies as the advantageous distinctions of the republic. The Chamber is ready to support the development of partnership between businessmen of the two countries and plans to strengthen its presence in Tashkent.
The vice-chairman of Confindustria in Vicenza, Remo Pedon, said the pandemic did not stop the Veneto region from increasing trade with Uzbekistan. In the first half of the year, products worth 19 million euros were supplied from there - twice as much as in the previous year. Soon a representative office of the confederation is to open in the capital of our country. Presidents of Pietro Fiorentini Cristiano Nardi and Group Venicecom Pierluigi Aluisio spoke about the work already in progress in the republic.
The first is engaged in a project to release 3.5 million smart gas meters for $ 500 million with the support of the government of Uzbekistan and local partners. The second has successfully cooperated with the republic in the jewelry field, and is also interested in other areas. Danieli cooperates with the Uzbek Metallurgical Plant and the Tashkent Metallurgical Plant on large investment projects.
The Embassy in Beijing continued a series of webinars for exporters and arranged another one on the theme "Development of e-commerce in China: new opportunities for the export of Uzbek goods" for more than 200 domestic businessmen, employees of trade and consulting companies targeting the Chinese market.
Issues of export through distributors, placement of goods on electronic trading platforms and specialized warehouses in free economic zones of the PRC were discussed with the participants. They were given practical guidance on how to enter the Chinese market and the growing role of e-commerce, especially under the influence of the coronavirus pandemic.
It was noted that today the PRC is the world leader in the field of e-commerce. The level of service and the quality of specialized sites and applications are growing, platforms connected with payment and courier systems are being launched. The two main formats are online stores Walmart, MissFresh, 7Fresh, Chunbo, Suning, Gome, Xiaomi and marketplaces (trading platforms) Taobao, Aliexpress, Tmall, 1688.com, Pinduoduo, JD.com, which give direct access to manufacturers, and not suppliers.
The diplomatic mission in London organized an online seminar on financial technologies with the assistance of Eurasian Investor, the British-Uzbek Friendship Society (BUS) and the European-Uzbek Association for Economic Cooperation. The reports were presented by one of the founders of the first British online bank Monzo Simon Vance-Colin, manager of the Ziglu cryptocurrency bank Hussein Badakhshani, heads of the Sturgeon capital investment fund Kian Zandi, BUS Louis Skyner and the Uzbekistan Venture Investment Association Dilshod Zufarov.
They spoke about the potential of using financial technologies, taking into account the availability of smartphones, the youth of the population of Central Asia and the demand for loans for small and medium-sized businesses. To develop the sector in our country in 2019, the Law "On Payments and Payment Systems" was adopted, the President approved the Strategy for reforming the banking system of the Republic of Uzbekistan for 2020-2025. 250 million electronic transactions are carried out annually, and in 9 months of 2020 their number doubled to $ 2.4 billion.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, nine new fintech startups have started operating, and foreign investors have also shown interest in them. Thus, the Sturgeon capital fund has a long-term business development strategy in Uzbekistan and has invested in a number of such startups. What is needed to bring the sphere to a new level? Creation of infrastructure, data centers and cloud storage, high speed and low cost of access to the Internet, improvement of legislation, training of specialists and expansion of contacts with international companies leading the high technology market - Google, Amazon, Microsoft and others.