BAKU, Azerbaijan, Aug. 17
By Ilkin Seyfaddini - Trend:
Currently, Uzbekistan is undergoing a major reform of its economy, Lawrence Dwight, International Monetary Fund (IMF) Senior Economist for Uzbekistan told Trend in an interview.
"Key reforms have included unification of the exchange rate and tax reforms. Going forward, Uzbekistan needs to restructure and improve the performance of state enterprises and banks. Uzbekistan should also boost the efficiency of the economy by promoting competitive domestic markets for goods and services, including energy, land, financial, and labor markets," the IMF official said.
"Consistent domestic policies towards businesses, for example by reducing the costs of government regulation, would also promote higher investment by both domestic and foreign investors,” added Dwight.
He believes that it is also important to continue improving transparency and governance to help achieve this, both in the public and private sectors, and to further enhance the effectiveness and coverage of the social safety net.
IMF's senior economist also emphasized the importance of Uzbekistan's joining the World Trade Organization (WTO).
“Entry into WTO should positively affect Uzbekistan’s economic development over the medium and long run. As part of the WTO accession process, Uzbekistan agrees with its trading partners to lower tariff and non-tariff barriers and harmonize its trading standards. This lowers costs to trade and enhances the predictability of trade policies, and boosts sectors where Uzbekistan has a competitive advantage,” said Dwight.
This in turn will provide jobs in higher-value-added sectors, he noted.
Follow author on Twitter: @seyfaddini