Union Minister for Commerce & Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution and Textile Shri Piyush Goyal has termed India-Uzbekistan relations as key to India’s vision of integrated extended neighbourhood. He also highlighted that this year is special to India-Uzbekistan relations, as both nations are celebrating 30th year of diplomatic relations. He said this while addressing the 13th session of India-Uzbekistan Inter governmental Commission (IGC) in New Delhi today.
In his remarks, the Minister said we are keen to have a vibrant people to people relations. Trade relations are a natural outcome of strengthening of bilateral relations. We need to take the relation forward in newer areas like technology, digital payment solutions and investment in start-ups.
The Minister emphasized upon the need to identify new drivers for ambitious growth in bilateral trade between India and Uzbekistan. He stressed upon the need for an integrated approach for regional connectivity and cooperation. He underlined seven emerging areas of cooperation between both the nations namely Digital Payments, Space Cooperation, Agri and Dairy, Pharma, Gems and Jewellery, MSME and Inter-regional cooperation.
Shri Goyal mentioned that despite Covid-19, interactions & trade have increased in the last few years. Trade has increased from $247 mn in 2019-20 to $342 mn in 2021-22, a growth of 38.5% . He further said we need to explore initiatives to improve Connectivity in facilitating trade b/w our countries.
The Uzbekistan delegation was led by Mr. Jamshid Khodjaev, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Investments and Foreign Trade of the Republic of Uzbekistan. In his address, Mr Khodjaev said that he is looking forward to the visit of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to Uzbekistan in September. He said the visit of PM Modi will be utilized fully for giving a significant boost to the bilateral relations in several areas of mutual interest.
IGC meeting is an important platform to deliberate on ideas, discuss issues & strengthen bilateral relations esp. in the field of trade & investment. The 2nd India-Uzbekistan JWG on Economic Cooperation was held on 22nd June’22 wherein a wide range of issues were discussed.