Uzbekistan: Migrants Affected

Despite some ups and downs in trading dynamics between the two countries,1 Russia remains Uzbekistan’s largest trading partner. Economic sanctions against Russia forced the government to make sure that Uzbekistan, which is not institutionally bound by the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) membership with the Russian economy, refrain from reorienting trading dynamics, not abruptly at least.

“Uzbekistan: Migrants Affected,” Farkhod Aminjonov

Despite some ups and downs in trading dynamics between the two countries,1 Russia remains Uzbekistan’s largest trading partner. Overall bilateral trade was at more than USD 7 billion in 2013. Due to the crisis, however, bilateral trade between Russia and Uzbekistan has been slowly decreasing with trade turnover amounting to only USD 4,5 billion in the first nine months of 2014.

Economic sanctions against Russia forced the government to make sure that Uzbekistan, which is not institutionally bound by the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) membership with the Russian economy, refrain from reorienting trading dynamics, not abruptly at least. Russia agreed to write off USD 865 million of Uzbekistan’s USD 890 million debt as a gesture of good will. In return, Uzbekistan agreed to consider establishing a free trade zone with the EEU.

Banning around 50 per cent of the imports of European agricultural goods opened up a spot in the Russian market that can hypothetically be filled with Uzbek products. While Uzbekistan will most likely increase the volume of Uzbek agricultural exports to Russia, this will not be critical for the Uzbek economy. First, all other major suppliers of such products (China, Turkey Israel, etc.) will increase the export volume and Uzbekistan will be one among many. Second, of all exports Uzbek food products, including agricultural goods, constitute only 13 per cent. Thus, any increase in the exports of agricultural products will be relatively insignificant in the overall export balance.

Link to the article: The-Russian-Crisis-and-its-Fallout-The-Impact-on-the-Eastern-Partnership-States-and-Central-Asia

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