Measures to intensify investment, industrial and export activities in Samarkand region
On September 11 this year, the Government Commission for the Development of Export and Investment headed by Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Uzbekistan S. Umurzakov and involving the heads of ministries, departments, industry associations, commercial banks, and local authorities summed up the work on a comprehensive review of the potential of Samarkand region and identification of additional reserves to enhance industrial and investment activities in the region.
From September 8 to 11, the members of the Commission visited and reviewed the operation of 6,259 industrial facilities, which resulted in the identification of 509 not commissioned facilities, the ones that reduced overall production or tax revenues to the budget, the ones operating out of full capacity or completely stopped production.
The review disclosed that 457 enterprises required credit resources to replenish working capital and purchase of the necessary engineering equipment, 107 enterprises had problems in restructuring of previously received loans, 16 enterprises had difficulties with the return of previously paid amounts of value added tax, 53 enterprises had significant accounts receivable, 153 enterprises were not connected to utilities and 77 enterprises did not receive raw materials for production. Besides, there were the problems related to allocation of lands, empty buildings and structures, difficulties in receiving of necessary permits, licenses and international certificates, the import of engineering equipment and the arrival of foreign specialists in Uzbekistan to commission and operate industrial facilities.
Close cooperation of relevant ministries, departments, commercial banks, and local authorities provided a plan of practical measures to restart idle industrial facilities specifying certain events, executors, and deadlines with the targeted assignment of responsible managers.
The members of the Commission analyzed and optimized current regional investment program, including 1,277 projects totaling UZS 16.7 trillion in order to define priority projects aimed at the creation of high-tech industries with a large output of products, exports, and the number of jobs, as well as projects that can be completed by the end of this year.
They studied opportunities for the development of intra- and inter-industry cooperation: through the analysis of raw material base, local infrastructure and existing production facilities, development of 57 projects to create 42 industrial clusters in the textile, leather and footwear, food and electrical industries and the production of construction materials. In particular, 9 textile clusters will be created the city of Samarkand, Akdarya, Pastdargom, Pakhtacha, Narpay and Urgut districts, and 16 clusters in the fruit processing industry are expected in Jambay, Samarkand, Akdarya, Ishtykhan, Bulungur, Payaryk districts and the city of Samarkand.
Uzstandard Agency will create a number of testing laboratories and organize courses for training, retraining and advanced training of specialists to ensure high level of quality of products manufactured and their compliance with international standards.
Particular attention was paid to the intensification of investment activities aimed at localization of production of high-tech products that are demanded on the domestic and foreign markets. The members of the Commission studied in detail the structure of regional imports in addition to the existing project localization program and developed 13 new projects aimed at the production of pharmaceuticals, metals and metal products, components for cars, engineering equipment and agricultural products.
Separately, they studied the operation of Urgut Free Economic Zone and 17 small industrial zones. Urgut FEZ implemented 49 projects totaling USD 272 million and created 3.3 thousand jobs at the moment. It is planned to implement 24 projects totaling USD 178.4 million and create 2.4 thousand jobs for 2020-2021. It is planned to allocate UZS 28.7 billion to provide the subjects of Urgut FEZ with the required utility lines by the end of this year.
It is planned to implement 57 investment projects totaling UZS 453.4 billion in 17 small industrial zones of Samarkand region, which will create about 2 thousand new jobs. UZS 45.1 billion will be allocated to strengthen the infrastructure of existing and newly created small industrial zones.
An important mechanism designed to increase the efficiency of the potential of free economic zones and small industrial zones in the region is the introduction of a fundamentally new system of project selection with the assignment of priority to industries aimed at production output, which, in turn, also will provide generation of complete production chains and increase the added value of domestic products besides the reduction of import dependency.
A set of practical measures developed during the work of the Government Commission will result in increase of industrial production in Samarkand region by the end of this year by UZS 2.2 trillion and additional creation of 10.8 thousand jobs. At the same time, tax deductions from industrial enterprises at the end of this year will amount to UZS 825 billion, which will amount to 149.3% of the approved forecast indicators.
The Prosecutor General's Office will constantly monitor the implementation of the developed practical measures and consider their progress during the monthly meetings of the Government Commission.