Uzbekistan and Afghanistan are planning to sign an agreement on free trade. "The parties are currently drafting the deal, which provides for the exemption from customs duties of Afghan goods, as well as pre-emption of other trade restrictions," an official of the Ministry of Foreign Trade told The Tashkent Times.
In addition, the parties are considering setting up of a border trade area at Termez Cargo Center specifically for Afghan consumers with possible creating of simplified foreign currency control, visa, tax and customs regimes.
Uzbekistan today attaches great importance to the development of Afghanistan and considers it as the integral part of Central Asian. Afghanistan’s sustainable development, the official added, is a guarantee of stability and prosperity for the entire region. Therefore, it is no coincidence that Uzbekistan regards this country as one of the key partners in the region and is genuinely interested in further advancing of ties in the trade, economic, investment and transport-communication areas.
According to him, in recent years there has been an upward trend in the two-way tarde with Afghanistan. In six months of this year the turnover grew by 18%.
In June of this in Termez the first round of dialogue between representatives of public and private sectors of Uzbekistan and Afghanistan was organized. This format of meetings turned out to be very productive.
Also, Uzbekistan has been supplying electricity to Afghanistan since 2002 with annual direct contracts. If in 2002, the supply volume was only 62 million kW/h, in 2018, a contract was signed for the supply of approximately two billion kWh of electricity.
One of the main objectives is to connect Afghanistan to the single power grid of Central Asia. This will be achieved through the construction of Surkhan-Puli-Khumri power transmission line.