Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan seek UAE cooperation

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Tashkent Uzbekistan
Central Park, Tashkent. Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan seek to increase economic cooperation with the UAE, as they court foreign direct investment (FDI) for their growing economies. Photo: Arthur Chapman

According to a recent study commissioned by the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, CIS countries Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan are seeking UAE investment, in an attempt to boost economic growth in their rapidly growing economies.

Compiled by The Economists’ Economic Intelligence Unit, the study says while the region is subject to economic uncertainty, FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) within the two countries is increasing. Kazakhstan’s GDP is expected to grow by an average of 5.8 percent until 2017, with investment in infrastructure, the Kashagan oil field coming online, and continued high oil prices. The report further states that factors including increased wages, higher employment opportunities, easier access to domestic credit and a stable inflation rate will only expedite the domestic demand growth.

The report yields other important findings:

  • The government of Uzbekistan has an ambitious USD 47 billion infrastructure development programme for 2011-2015, which it plans to finance through loans and also through FDI sources
  • The government is actively seeking investment in energy, metallurgy, agriculture, light industry, electro-technical and pharmaceuticals to support privatisation efforts
  • Tourism industry within the region is on the agenda of being developed as it contains untapped potential in attracting visitors from Islamic countries to visit holy shrines

The notable sectors witnessing the financial interest include the energy, real estate, logistics and tourism.

H.E. Hamad Buamim; “Uzbekistan offers Dubai businesses with a number of options for expansion or joint cooperation. For instance, Dubai’s expertise, in construction and real estate, logistics and tourism can be exported to Uzbekistan with success.

Our regional trade mission to Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan comes at a strategic time as we seek to strengthen our relationships with the CIS region. Both Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan have strong potential for investment in the right sectors and we are aiming to enhance cooperation with governments and private sectors.

The trade sector is one that we see opportunities for enhancement between Dubai and Uzbekistan. For instance, UAE imports from Uzbekistan have continued to rise steadily over the past five years to 2011 to reach USD 6.15 million. Meanwhile, UAE re-exports to Uzbekistan have begun to rise again after falling 42 percent since 2007.” — H.E. Hamad Buamim, Director General, Dubai Chamber

After the successful launch of the Dubai Chamber’s office in Baku, Azerbaijan in November last year, there have been increased efforts to increased cooperation with the CIS region. As noted in 2011, UAE imports from the country increased significantly, the bulk of which included precious metals and stones.

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