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Uzbekistan to develop transport, logistics sector for Central Asian countries under UN special program

2 November 2020

Uzbekistan will create a center for the development of transport and communication relations for Central Asian countries within the framework of the UN Special Program, Trend reports citing the Ministry of Investment and foreign trade of Uzbekistan.

The transport and logistics sector for the countries of Central Asia is a strategic direction of development from a political, economic, and geographic point of view.

Global and regional quarantine restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic have led to the temporary closure of key transport corridors used to transport goods.

A number of countries in most cases took measures that led to a complete stop of freight flows and a slowdown in some directions of their routes, and traders had to look for new solutions and use alternative transport corridors, which led to an increase in transportation costs.

Governments of the countries of the region are currently paying great attention to the development of effective strategies and solutions that will optimize transport costs in the implementation of international cargo transportation by improving the quality, safety, and speed of freight and passenger traffic, developing infrastructure, and introducing modern technologies.

One of the solutions is the initiative voiced by the President of Uzbekistan during his speech at the 75th session of the UN General Assembly to create a Regional Center for the Development of Transport and Communication Relations within the framework of the UN Special Program for the Economies of Central Asia (SPECA) and the Program of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific Ocean (ESCAP).

The center will be designed to facilitate the coordinated implementation of promising projects aimed at increasing the efficiency of using the transport and logistics potential and solving systemic problems that impede the further expansion of regional and international cargo transportation.

The practical development of the concept of the center is currently being carried out by experts and heads of specialized divisions of the Ministry of Investment and Foreign Trade of Uzbekistan.

It is planned that funds from international and regional financial institutions will be attracted to finance the activities of the center, and its leadership will include the ministers of transport of the participating countries.

The full use of the trade, economic, investment, transport, and logistics potential of the countries of Central Asia and Afghanistan will allow at least double the GDP of the countries of the region within 10 years, which justifies the urgency of creating the center as an effective mechanism for sustainable development.

It was noted that the countries of Central Asia and Afghanistan are members of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), the United Nations Development Program, the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation Program, and a number of other international programs and projects aimed at developing transport and logistics sector.