May 2023 was marked by an event important not only for the economy of Uzbekistan, but also from viewpoint of the development of international cooperation in order to implement mutually agreed solutions to achieve stability and sustainability of the world economy, where the Central Asian region already occupies high positions, and Uzbekistan plays a key role in them. At the EBRD forum held in Samarkand, we managed to talk with the Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany to Uzbekistan, Dr. Tilo KLINNER, whereupon he expressed his opinion on the essence of this event.
– Mr. Ambassador, what is your assessment of the work of the Samarkand Forum, how important is it for our country?
– Of course, this is a very significant event, because the EBRD has its first meeting here on a global scale of activity. The EBRD is now the most important tool for us to work both in the energy sector and other strategic sectors of the economy in order to effectively invest our joint national projects with Uzbekistan.
– If it is possible, could you please tell us what Uzbek-German projects are being considered within the framework of this summit?
– We cannot say anything about it at the moment, because this is a new direction that is only under consideration, and only when concrete decisions are made, we will be able to share them. I can only note that we have a lot of infrastructure projects, for example, we are studying the possibilities and benefits of developing railway arteries between Tashkent and Khiva or Bukhara, because at the moment it would be desirable for freight and passenger transport to have separate routes. The agenda includes issues of development of the fuel and energy sector, power plants, support for the gas industry, expansion of renewable energy generation. Now we have a lot of prospects for these projects. Strategically important are solutions for resource conservation and improving the efficiency of the electricity network, as well as ensuring the safety of gas storage facilities.
– Which German companies are currently interested in investing in the economy of Uzbekistan?
– Now quite a lot of German companies are operating on the territory of Uzbekistan. There are our enterprises around Almalik, “FALK PORSCHE GMBH”, “Siemens” almost everywhere, as well as the “Knauf” company, which has been operating in the country for a long time. Many companies express interest and, as a rule, have a desire to expand their business.
– From the viewpoint of the ambassador, how do you assess the development of the world economy, taking into account the conflict situation between Russia and Ukraine? How do you think Uzbekistan is coping with the negative impact of the crisis and maintaining stability in the country’s economy today?
– Actually, we understand the existing situation here and support measures to curb destabilization processes. We hope that it will develop in a constructive way. It is very important for us to fulfill our obligations and jointly adopted decisions to support Uzbekistan on the path to achieving economic independence. At the same time, it is very important that the country does not circumvent the European sanctions regime. We are working together on this issue. It is gratifying that during the visit of the President of Uzbekistan to Germany, full mutual understanding was established between our states and governments and a lot of promising joint development projects were outlined.
– Could you please tell us, what is the most important event that took place during the trip and meetings at a high state level, which was done within the framework of the official visit of the President of Uzbekistan to Germany?
– They were all significant – these were political meetings with the Chancellor, and with our president Mr. Steinmeier. They were very informative, an exchange of views took place, which is very important for the effective support and development of the sphere of our political relations. At the same time, fruitful meetings were held with the management of large German companies, with whom we developed new joint projects implemented for a total of 8.4 billion US Dollars. This is the ceiling level that we have never reached before.
– In conclusion our interview – could you please tell us, what is your opinion regarding the economic development of Uzbekistan?
– At the meeting of our delegations within the framework of the EBRD Samarkand Summit, the participants expressed the opinion that Uzbekistan is a country whose rapid development is ahead of our expectations. And I agree with this conclusion. This is a good compliment to financiers. If they are so positive, then you can be proud that you have good prospects compared to the previous period of our relations, when development was quite satisfactory. There are many important tasks that need to be solved, and we are very optimistic!
– We thank you profoundly, Mr. Ambassador.