WASHINGTON, March 17, 2022 – Today, World Bank Group President David Malpass met with Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Investments and Foreign Trade Sardor Umurzakov of Uzbekistan.
President Malpass expressed his deep gratitude to Deputy Prime Minister Umurzakov for his personal assistance in evacuating World Bank Group (WBG) and United Nations (UN) staff dependents from Afghanistan.
President Malpass and Deputy Prime Minister Umurzakov reaffirmed the strong strategic partnership between the WBG and Uzbekistan. President Malpass commended Deputy Prime Minister Umurzakov for Uzbekistan’s good progress on implementing important reforms, including commitments to reduce the state footprint and increase private sector participation in the economy. They discussed the Country Climate and Development Report (CCDR) which the WBG plans to undertake as Uzbekistan works to integrate climate and development.
President Malpass urged the continuation of positive reform momentum, emphasizing the need for a level playing field between state-owned enterprises (SOEs) and private firms, and encouraged the adoption of a new Competition Act, State Assets Management Law, and the Privatization Law. President Malpass and Deputy Prime Minister Umurzakov also discussed the importance of financial sector reform, human capital development, and minimizing market distortions through the continued implementation of fair business practices, including in the Uzbek cotton sector.
President Malpass and Deputy Prime Minster Umurzakov addressed the ongoing war in Ukraine and the disruption of trade, cross border payments, remittances and the challenge of diversifying key logistic routes and supply chains.