United States hosts Uzbek-American business forum
Uzbekistan, Tashkent, July 9 / Trend D.Azizov /
Prospects for the development of the Uzbek-American cooperation were mulled at the business forum held at the Uzbek Embassy in Washington, the U.S. State Department reported.
The business forum was attended by Uzbek Ambassador to the United States Ilkhom Nematov, Deputy Minister of Foreign Economic Relations, Investments and Trade Shavkat Tulyaganov, Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, Robert Blake, American-Uzbek Commerce Chamber Chairman Harry Eustace and the entrepreneurs of Uzbekistan and the U.S..
The forum discussed promising areas of economic cooperation between the two countries in the oil and gas, energy, chemical, automotive, pharmaceutical, construction and other industries, as well as the opportunity to attract investments of U.S. companies in the Navoi free industrial zone (FIEZ).
Speaking at the event, Blake said Uzbekistan weathered the global economic downturn well and continues to have solid economic growth. Uzbekistan grew by 9% in 2008 and 8.1% in 2009. Since Uzbekistan's independence, U.S. firms have invested roughly 500 million U.S. dollars in Uzbekistan. And I believe there is room for much more.
Earlier this year, Uzbekistan hosted both the annual meeting of the Asian Development Bank and the Central Asia Trade and Investment Framework Agreement Working Group meeting in Tashkent. Both of these events helped to highlight Uzbekistan's potential, as well as that of Central Asia as a region, as a bridge between East and West, North and South, as it was during the times of the historic Silk Road, he said
Expanding trade and investment cooperation between the two countries was a priority issue at the first Uzbek-U.S .annual consultations held in December 2009.
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