Development of Navoi free industrial economic zone in Uzbekistan

Development of Navoi free industrial economic zone in Uzbekistan

Uzbekistan has adopted an evolutionary approach to transition into a market economy since the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, which contributed to a somewhat less painful transition process, compared to most of the other CIS countries. Coupled with a number of successful anti-crisis programs, this approach also helped to maintain a strong macroeconomic performance in recent years.

The first South Korean Knowledge Sharing Program (KSP) with Uzbekistan was implemented in 2004 with the Center for Effective Economic Policy (CEEP) of the Ministry of Economy of Uzbekistan on the topic, ‘Industrial Development and Export Promotion Policy of Uzbekistan.’ In this report, the Korean experts expressed the necessity of establishing Export Processing Zones (EPZs) or Special Economic Zones (SEZ) as a policy recommendation for sustainable economic growth of Uzbekistan.

As a result, ‘Feasibility Study on Establishing Special Economic Zones’ was carried out as the second Knowledge Sharing Program between the two governments in 2007. In this study, experts from both countries visited six places in different parts of Uzbekistan where SEZs were expected to be built up. Navoi was one of the six places examined and the experts recommended that if the Uzbek government had an intention to develop Navoi as a new air-logistics hub, then prompt and massive investment were vital and cooperation and collaboration with renowned organizations and firms were necessary.