Asian Development Bank (ADB) President Masatsugu Asakawa and Uzbekistan’s Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Investments and Foreign Trade, and ADB Governor Sardor Umurzakov today discussed ADB’s ongoing support for Uzbekistan’s fight against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic and the bank’s portfolio of projects in the country.
“COVID-19 has hit all countries including Uzbekistan with devastating effect,” said Mr. Asakawa. “The government quickly strengthened the healthcare system, boosted social protection measures, and supported small and medium-sized enterprises through fiscal and monetary incentives and job creation schemes – but the situation remains very challenging. We are fully committed to helping the government manage the crisis and will continue to support the reform agenda.”
Mr. Umurzakov expressed his gratitude to ADB for its ongoing support.
On 7 July, ADB and the Government of Uzbekistan signed the agreement on a $500 million budget support loan to help Uzbekistan mitigate the adverse health and economic impacts of the disease, funded through ADB’s COVID-19 pandemic response option. ADB is working on further emergency assistance to help increase efficiency, quality, and accessibility of healthcare in Uzbekistan, establish a monitoring and response system for COVID-19, and improve the healthcare system’s overall resilience.
Mr. Asakawa and Mr. Umurzakov discussed ADB’s ongoing support for Uzbekistan’s investments and reforms including projects in hydropower, power sector reforms, gas transmission modernization, skills development, railways electrification, road rehabilitation, and solid waste management.
They also discussed scaling up ADB’s private sector engagement and public private partnerships (PPP) in Uzbekistan. The bank has successfully brought two PPP projects to the tendering phase – Sherabad Solar Phase 1 and Tashkent District Heating – and plans to support non-sovereign projects in energy and financial services in the near future.