Uzbekistan’s multi-coloured textile revolution

Ben Aris in Tashkent November 25, 2021

Uzbekistan has a very long history of making luxury textiles and today the country is trying to revive them.

Uzbekistan’s golden giant, the Navoi Mining & Metallurgy Kombinat

Ben Aris in Navoi November 21, 2021

The Muruntau gold mine located in the Qizilqum (aka Kyzyl-Kum) desert in Uzbekistan is the world’s biggest open-cast gold mine. Discovered in 1958, some $3bn has been invested into modernisation, and the plan is to privatise it in the next years.

Uzbekistan’s cement giant Qizilqumsement on a roll

Ben Aris in Navoi November 16, 2021

Qizilqumsement (QZSM) is of Soviet vintage and is the biggest cement maker in Central Asia. Its business is booming as demand is outstripping demand. A new production line is due online in December that should make the company even more profitable.

Uzbekistan central bank focuses on inflation targeting, but rising prices remain a problem

Ben Aris in Tashkent November 15, 2021

The Uzbek economy was one of only two major economies in the world that didn't go into recession in 2020. While the macroeconomic fundamentals are solid, the main headache remains inflation.

Savitsky’s museum, the Louvre of the Steppe

Ben Aris in Nukus November 14, 2021

The small town of Nukus in the wastes of Uzbekistan’s Qizilqum (aka Kzyl-Kum) desert is the “Louvre of the Steppe.” The new building houses an Aladdin’s cave of lost Russian impressionist art, rescued from Stalin's terror of the 30s.

Uzbekistan: People no longer in the dark about power shortages

Eurasianet November 12, 2021

Until now, officials had been silent about ongoing power cuts, even calling them a thing of the past.

Uzbekistan tells COP26 it aims to cut emissions by 35% within decade

Muzaffar Ismailov in Tashkent November 11, 2021

Deputy PM says climate in Central Asia changing twice as fast as in other regions due to the drying up of the Aral Sea.

Norwegian Refugee Council calls on world to help Iran deal with hundreds of thousands of fled Afghans

bne IntelIiNews November 10, 2021

Ahead of harsh winter, 4,000 to 5,000 people from Afghanistan are crossing Iranian border daily says humanitarian NGO.

‘Expect less water next year,’ Kyrgyzstan warns downstream neighbours

Ayzirek Imanaliyeva for Eurasianet November 10, 2021

Relations between upstream and downstream Central Asian countries can be tense. This won’t help.

Market weighing up Uzbekneftegaz’s scheduled eurobond

Muzaffar Ismailov in Tashkent November 8, 2021

Rating agencies estimate that major projects to be completed in coming years might increase company’s Ebitda by more than 50% and contribute to the issuer’s deleveraging.

Perspectives | Islamic State using China to vilify Taliban

Lucas Webber for Eurasianet November 8, 2021

Since the Taliban took Kabul, Islamic State sympathisers across South Asia have increased attacks on the movement over its ties to China.

Uzbeks engulfed by worst dust storm in at least 150 years

Muzaffar Ismailov in Tashkent November 8, 2021

Inhabitants of Tashkent struggle to breathe. Critical indicators suddenly showed city as second most polluted in the world.

The hoovers of Nukus

Ben Aris in Nukus November 6, 2021

Nukus in Uzbekistan's far west used to be an ecological disaster zone, but the worst of its problems are fixed. The country's leading white goods manufacturer Artel has set up a flourishing hoover production facility in the desert town.

Uzbekistan privatises its entire cotton sector in its most radical reform yet

Ben Aris in Tashkent November 5, 2021

In the most radical of all reforms made since Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev took over in 2016, the entire cotton sector has been privatised and production of this vital crop is now entirely owned by private companies.

Uzbekistan rising

Ben Aris in Tashkent November 5, 2021

Uzbekistan’s economy is taking off. President Shavkat Mirziyoyev took over five years ago and launched a radical reform programme, which are now bearing fruit. The economy is flourishing.

bneGREEN: Climate Investment Funds issues new generation of green bonds worth $500mn

Richard Lockhart in Edinburgh November 4, 2021

The World Bank has backed the issue of $500mn of green bonds ever year for 10 years in a bid to raise private capital to scale up clean energy and sustainable infrastructure in emerging economies.

EBRD lifts emerging Europe forecasts but warns of threats ahead

bne IntelliNews November 4, 2021

The EBRD has increased its 2021 GDP growth projection for the emerging Europe and SEMED regions where it operates to 5.5% after a strong performance in H1.

Uzmetkombinat – one of Uzbekistan’s blue-chip companies

Scott Osheroff of AFC Capital in Tashkent November 1, 2021

Uzmetkombinat is one of Uzbekistan's biggest metallurgical companies and with demand soaring the company is investing €600mn into an expansion.

Event | Russia looks to Taliban to contain Islamic State in Afghanistan

Eurasianet October 28, 2021

Moscow seems willing to tolerate Taliban rights abuses, if the movement can get the job done.

Tajikistan approves Chinese plan to construct security base near Afghan border

Kanat Shaku in Almaty October 28, 2021

Dushanbe reportedly has also offered to transfer full control of existing, unacknowledged, base to Beijing. Chinese worried Afghanistan situation could benefit separatist East Turkistan Islamic Movement.