of the Republic of Uzbekistan
to the United Kingdom of Great Britain
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Report by the President of Uzbekistan on the results and priorities of socio-economic development of the country discussed in London

The Embassy of the Republic of Uzbekistan in London hosted a briefing, dedicated to the results of socio-economic development of the country in 2015 and the most important priorities of the economic agenda in 2016. 
The event was attended by more than 50 representatives of diplomatic, scientific, academic and expert circles of the United Kingdom. During his presentation the head of the diplomatic mission informed the audience about the main indicators of development of the Republic for 2015, the progress in deepening economic reforms and modernization of the country, and providing diversification and macroeconomic balance despite the ongoing crisis in many countries.
The participants of the briefing showed great interest in finding about measures implemented in Uzbekistan to reduce the state presence in the economy through the implementation of a program of privatization of state assets, improvement of the conditions for business development and the protection of private property, the introduction of modern principles of corporate governance and support for small business. Members of the British public were especially attentive when introduced to the strategic goals and objectives of the economic program of Uzbekistan in the medium term, designated by the President.
In particular, participants were encouraged by the plans of doubling GDP by 2030, the phased reduction in cotton production and increase the production of quality agricultural products, 
the further development of information and telecommunication, transport and logistics infrastructure in the country, and others.
The briefing was accompanied by a presentation by Professor Shailaja Fennell of Cambridge University, who expressed her views and assessment of the President's report. In her 
opinion the «Uzbek model» is interesting as it involves a gradual structural transformation without any abrupt changes. She noted that despite challenges in economic diversification, Uzbekistan has achieved great results in this area.  The British economist noted that Uzbekistan’s high GDP growth has been recognized by many international financial institutions.  
Particularly noteworthy are the government's efforts to improve the business environment, with strong support for small business and protection of private property. It is obvious that it much more important for foreign investors to know that Uzbekistan has become one of top 10 countries in the world with the best results in improving the business environment, rather than a progress report on transparency, and etc.
Commenting on the achievements of the republic in the field of agriculture, the Cambridge University professor pointed to three key components - the diversification of agricultural products, improvement of quality and a focus on in-depth processing with the introduction of modern technologies. Development in this area will strengthen the competitive advantages of Uzbek agricultural products, and help Uzbekistan to take a strong position on world markets.
ING Bank's Frederick Olland noted that Uzbekistan has significantly strengthened the small and medium-sized businesses sectors, there 
is a high entrepreneurial activity among the population, and the level of services quality has shown great performance. All this, in his view, shows the strong support of the state, which 
promotes and protects the interests of small businesses by creating the necessary conditions and opportunities.
Michael Tomas, Director of Pathfinder Trade & Investment appreciated the timeliness and relevance of the Government's efforts to reduce the presence of the state in the economy and the privatization of a number of industrial 
enterprises and objects of state property. He reminded the participants that the effective privatization carried out in the United Kingdom has given a powerful impetus to the development of the economy in the 1970s.
At the end of the briefing, the participants noted the positive nature of the event, which, in their view, had allowed them to update their knowledge in terms of recent development of Uzbekistan and its strategic vision for the coming years. It was emphasized that in the context of continuing uncertainty and turbulence on the global markets, this information is crucial for foreign investors and businessmen.
Jahon Information Agency, London 
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