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NEWS AND EVENTS
June 17, 2014
World Bank Has Approved Two Projects in the Agriculture Sector of Uzbekistan worth US$410.3 million
The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors today approved financing totaling US$410.3 million for two projects in the agriculture sector of Uzbekistan: the Horticulture Development Project and the South Karakalpakstan Water Resources Management Improvement Project.

The two new projects are part of the Bank Group’s Country Partnership Strategy for Uzbekistan for 2012-2015 which aims to help the country to: (i) diversify agriculture to high value crops; (ii) intensify agricultural yields and productivity; (iii) increase the efficiency of infrastructure; and (iv) enhance the economy\'s competitiveness.

The Horticulture Development Project (IBRD loan of US$150 million) will assist horticulture farmers, to increase their farms’ productivity and incomes. At the same time, the project will promote shared prosperity by supporting the growth and development of small and medium enterprises in the rural areas, creating more jobs in the agro-processing, trading and export sectors, and increasing the value added of the agricultural sector.

“The new Horticulture Development Project will help create jobs by improving access to technologies, knowledge and markets, strengthening technical and managerial capacity in the farming and agri-business sectors, and introducing new financial products in the financial sector” - said Saroj Kumar Jha, World Bank Regional Director for Central Asia.

The project has three components: (i) Agricultural Support Services, (ii) Access to Credit, and (iii) Project Management, and will be implemented in eight regions of Uzbekistan, namely Andijon, Jizzak, Ferghana, Kashkadarya, Karakalpakstan, Namangan, Samarkand, and Tashkent.

This is the first project in the World Bank Group portfolio in Uzbekistan where the World Bank and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) will join efforts in implementing the project.

The South Karakalpakstan Water Resources Management Improvement Project (IDA credit of $242.50 million and IBRD loan of $18.22 million) aims to restore irrigation and improve water management in this region. The project will remove the dependence on energy-inefficient pumping by developing a gravity off-take from Tuyamuyun reservoir and dismantling all lower Amu Darya pumping stations currently serving the project area. It will strengthen institutions and capacities, and improve performance of public irrigation and drainage service delivery.

“Better water management and irrigation will lead to increased farm productivity and climate resilience, and thus help farmers in South Karakalpakstan build their assets and improve well-being. We estimate that 41,000 water users will be provided with new public irrigation and drainage service delivery under this project”, said Saroj Kumar Jha, World Bank Regional Director for Central Asia. “The project will bring other remarkable results as well – improved irrigation efficiency will lead to net water savings of 10 million m3 per year, and reduced energy costs will result in as much as $2.39 million savings per year”.

The project consists of the following components: (i) Modernization of Irrigation Network; (ii) Modernization of Agriculture; and (iii) Project Management, Monitoring and Evaluation.

Uzbekistan joined the World Bank in 1992. Current World Bank commitments to Uzbekistan amount to over $1.4 billion.

(Source: UzDaily.uz)


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