Saturday, 31, July, 2021

The right to manage the Samarkand international airport has been handed over to Air Marakanda, owned by Bakhtiyor Fozilov under the PPP terms and with tax reliefs.

On April 15, the President Shvakat Mirziyoyev familiarized himself the reconstruction project progress of the Samarkand international airport with an estimated cost of 238.2 billion soums, or US$ 22 million.

The new airport, scheduled to be completed in September this year, will introduce open skies policies and create 1000 jobs.

The Large production facilities launch targeted program for 2021, which is the second annex to the president’s Measures to implement the investment program of Uzbekistan for 2021-2023 decree," states that USD 62 million will be contributed from the state budget for the reconstruction of Samarkand international airport.

After the reconstruction The rights of modernization and management of the Samarkand International Airport and the airfield complex except for air navigation) will be handed over to Air Marakanda under the public-private partnership terms for a period of 20 years.

According to Gazeta.uz, Air Marakanda will invest US$ 80 million for the development of the infrastructure of the Samarkand Airport, and it is also planned to turn it into a major transport and tourism center in cooperation with experts from Munich International Airport (Germany), Istanbul International Airport (Turkey).

According to open data, Air Marakanda LLC was formed only a year ago - on April 9, 2020, with the authorized capital at 400 million soums, or US$ 38 thousand.

The founder is Drupola Holding Limited, a company registered in the state of Cyprus, (INTERLINK HERMES PLAZA, Floor 4, Flat 400A). The company was founded on January 31, 2011 and doesn’t seem to have experience in the management of international or national airports.

There is no information in open sources who owns the company Drupola Holding Limited. However, Ferkensco Management Limited and Eriell Holding Company Limited are also registered at the legal address in Cyprus where this company is registered (INTERLINK HERMES PLAZA, Floor 4, Flat 400A).

A native of Samarkand Bakhtiyor Fozilov, chairman of the board of ERIELL and Group Enter Engineering, , in an interview to IntelliNews in May 2020, announced that he is also the managing director of Ferkenso.

Also, Bakhtiyor Fozilov owns 60 percent of the Samarkand Touristic Center, which is building a tourism center, a congress hall, hotels under the Marakanda Hotel Group brand and recreational facilities on ​​212 hectares on the banks of the rowing canal in the Samarkand province.

Tax reliefs

In addition, by the president’s Measures to develop public-private partnerships in the management of the national airports decree adopted in March 2021, companies like Air Marakanda LLC are provided with large tax reliefs.

That is, when implementing airports reconstruction, modernization, operation and management projects under the public-private partnership terms, within three years from the date of signing the agreement, private partners, design organizations, operators, consultants, contractors and subcontractors involved by them shall be waived from paying:

  • Customs duty for imported special vehicles, road construction equipment, machinery, mechanisms, equipment, raw materials, materials, spare parts, components, assemblies, technological and design documents, software, devices, including special road construction machinery and equipment designed to equip contractor construction organizations involved in the implementation of the project;
  • Recycling fee for imported vehicles (except for cars) and special equipment.

Also, private partners and airports will pay income tax, including withholding when paying dividends, in the amount of 50 percent of the established rate. The established property tax rate for airports will be cut by 50 percent.

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