NEWS AND EVENTS
September 19, 2014
From the Bank to the Counter
Uzbekistan has seriously expanded its capacity with regard to fruits, vegetables and food production in recent years. The progress has been largely determined by the support banks rendered to businesses and farms through special preferential credit resources for the introduction of mini-technologies and advanced processing equipment, drip irrigation systems, purchase of agricultural machinery, fertilizers and seeds. In the last five years alone, the country’s commercial banks have loaned four trillion soums to the foodstuff producers. (Currency rates of CB from 19.09.2014 1$= 2359.56 soums)
The agro-industrial complex of Uzbekistan has always been one of the pillars of the real economy sector. It has been permanently leading both in terms of volume of production, and in attracting foreign investment, introduction of up-to-date technological equipment. These positions have been achieved primarily by focusing on high-performance and efficient agriculture, based on the new generation of farmers whose activity has come beyond just cultivation of agricultural products. Partially established by foreign investors and equipped with the latest hardware, modern enterprises is another important component of success. As a result, the country has made a significant progress: annually it has been growing about 16 million tons of fruits and vegetables. Over 180 species of fresh and processed fruit and vegetable products are exported to 80 countries.
In the last three years alone, the volume of exported agricultural products has more than tripled. Bank loans have largely contributed in these indicators.
In 2013, the commercial banks loaned 365 billion soums for the cultivation, preservation, processing, and support for fruit and vegetable exports. The loans empowered thousands of businessmen to buy seeds and seedlings, fertilizers, purchase agricultural machinery of various modifications, build greenhouses, cold storages, intensive gardens, and commission new production lines. Besides, jointly with foreign financial institutions, Uzbekistan is currently implementing big projects worth more than $1.1 billion. They are aimed at introduction of advanced agro-industrial technologies, development and reconstruction of agricultural Infrastructure, irrigation and drainage systems, production of foods through deep processing of local feedstock.
Targeted at the establishment of new production facilities and equipping them with compact production lines, the loan funds have led to an increase of the number of mini-enterprises for meat and dairy, fruit and vegetable processing in rural areas, as well as service centers for the agricultural food procurement. As a result, certain types of previously imported products are now manufactured domestically. The loan portfolio of commercial banks contains thousands of new projects on the introduction of modern agricultural technologies, increase of agricultural production, improvement of infrastructure and logistics.
(Source: «Uzbekistan Today» newspaper)