Overview of best prospect sectors, major infrastructure projects, significant government procurements and business opportunities
The growing public and private investments resulting from the government’s export oriented and import substituting industrialization agenda may create more opportunities for U.S. businesses. Increasing prospects may be found in the following sectors:
- Banking: The government plans to transition the banking sector from public to private capital, with a target of privatizing 60% of the banking industry by 2025.
- Education: The government intends to increase the number of students attending university (particularly in technical fields) to 50% of all high school graduates by 2030, and plans to build 30 new universities to accommodate them. The government wants to attract foreign universities interested in establishing branches in Uzbekistan.
- Tourism: Developing tourism is among the major priorities of the Government and the number of foreign tourists is rapidly increasing. It creates incentives for construction of international class hotels and other infrastructure in the Great Silk Road cities of Samarkand, Bukhara and Khiva and connecting them to Tashkent.
- Oil and Gas: Projects in the oil and gas industry are intended to attract about $36.5 billion in investment from various sources through 2030. These projects may represent good export opportunities for U.S. suppliers of oil and gas extraction, transportation, processing technologies, and oil services.
- Public-Private Partnerships: Under Uzbekistan’s law on Public-Private Partnerships, there are new opportunites for foreign investors to participate in large projects, with tenders operated by the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) Development Agency under the Ministry of Finance of Uzbekistan Since 2018, foreign bidders have signed PPP agreements to implement several fossil fuel and renewable energy projects.
- Food Processing and Packaging: Growing external demand for food products produced in Uzbekistan and efforts to improve the productivity of the agricultural sector create export opportunities for suppliers of food preservation, processing, and packaging technologies as well as transportation and logistics solutions.
- Construction: Construction is one of most promising industries in Uzbekistan, which demonstrates a continual growth rate of 15-20% per year. In 2019, the industry accounted for about $7.8 billion of both public and private investments.
- ICT: An ambitious government program aimed at developing a national information-communication system and upgrading communications infrastructure to the 5G standard creates increasing demand for IT solutions in both the public and private sectors of the economy.