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Uzbekistan

Government and institution measures in response to COVID-19.

Government and institution measures in response to COVID-19.

Return to homepage  |  Last updated: 28 October, 2020

General Information

As elsewhere, the global pandemic has significantly impacted Uzbekistan’s economy. Uzbekistan has faced weaker trading partner demand (particularly for natural gas) and lower domestic demand due to quarantine restrictions and uncertainty leading to lower private consumption and investment. These effects have been partly offset by the increase in gold prices (Uzbekistan’s largest export) and a recovery in remittances. In the first half of 2020, Uzbekistan’s real GDP growth was 0.2 percent, compared with 4.1 percent in the first quarter. Uzbekistan’s exchange rate was relatively steady in the first quarter. As COVID crisis spread to global markets, the exchange rate depreciated 5½ percent in April, and has remained relatively stable since

Tax measures – Direct and Indirect

(e.g. payment deferrals, rate reductions…)

Click here to see a comprehensive summary of jurisdictional tax measures and government reliefs in response to COVID-19.

Other measures and sources

  • To deal with the crisis, Uzbekistan’s government created an Anti-Crisis Fund of US$ 1 billion (about 2 percent of GDP) to support the economy and help those most affected by the crisis.
  • In addition to the Anti-Crisis Fund, the government temporary reduced some taxes and the Fund for Reconstruction and Development increased lending. 
  • Specific crisis response measures have included:
    • (i) expanded funding for healthcare, including for medicines, the costs of quarantines, and salary supplements for healthcare works; 
    • (ii) an increase in the number of families with children and low-income families receiving social benefits;
    • (iii) assistance to affected businesses via interest subsidies; 
    • (iv) additional public works for infrastructure and to support employment. The authorities also temporary reduced social contributions for individual entrepreneurs, postponed the payment of property and land taxes, extended a moratorium on tax audits, and delayed tax declarations for 2019 income taxes. The central government also asked local governments to reduce taxes by 30 percent and provide a 6-month grace period on paying property tax.

MONETARY AND MACRO-FINANCIAL

  • The central bank suggested banks defer loan payments for firms in sectors affected by COVID-19. Consequently, state-owned banks have extended deadlines for loan repayments for affected sectors, including for the national air carrier. The central bank reduced its policy rate by 200 basis points in 2020. The policy rate was reduced from 16 to 15 percent in April 15, and from 15 to 14 percent in September 8. While the central bank has not changed requirements for regulatory capital or liquidity, it continues monitoring financial conditions.

Main sources of information