|December 5-December 12, 1998|
Moldovian president to visit Uzbekistan
President of Moldova Petru Luchinsky will pay an official visit to
Uzbekistan December 17-18 at the invitation of President Islam Karimov.
Erk opposition party to run in 1999-2000 elections
The Uzbek opposition party Erk is to run in the 1999-2000
parliamentary elections, Iranian radio from Mashhad reported on
Wednesday 25th November.
The party's secretary-general, Otanazar Oripov, told the
radio that Erk had not taken part in the previous elections but
was planning to take part in these elections because President
Islam Karimov has promised the international community that
they will be held in a democratic way, on a multi-party basis.
Uzbekistan suspends gas exports to Tajikistan
Uzbekistan has suspeneded gas
exports to Tajikstan citing technical causes.
The president of the state-owned company Tajikkommunservis, Aziz Inoyatov,
told Itar-Tass on Saturday that the stop to exports is temporary and tehnical.
He said his company had got a notice from Uzbekstransgaz gas provider that
gas deliveries were stopped because of emergency repair work at one of
stretches of the gas mainline in Uzbekistan.
Uzbekistan's gas sector assured that the delivieries would be restarted
immediately after repairs are over, without specifying dates.
Inoyatov said curtailed gas supplies are coming to Tajikistan's aluminum plant, an
energy-intensive enterprise .
The Tajik governmental statistics committe had said in a release that Uzbekistan
had delivered to Tajikistan 584,455 cubic metres of natural gas, a 33 million
dollar worth, over the nine months of this year.
Under an inter-governmental agreement, Tajikistan pays for gas by shipments of
Uzbek cargoes on the Leninabad stretch of the Tajik railroad.
Uzbek Football team victorious
Uzbekistan Football team played two matches so far in the XIII Asian Games in Thailand. In the first
match they tied with Kuweit 3:3, although the victory slipped away in the third additional minute.
In the second match Uzbekistan needed a big victory over Mongolia with the difference of over 11 goals
to advance into the next round and play with more convenient teams, because Kuweit had beaten
Mongolia 11:0. So the Uzbeks smashed the Mongols - 15:0! with Lebedev scoring four goals,
Kasymov and Shkvyrin scoring three goals each. In the next round Uzbekistan was to play against
North Korea, Turkmenistan and India in a group. The winner and the runner-up would advance
into the quarterfinals. Uzbekistan defeated the North Koreans 4:0 and the Indians 2:0.
Council of migrant associations meet in Duma
The first meeting of the Council of
Migrants' Associations opened in the Russian State Duma on Saturday.
In his opening address, Duma speaker Gennady Seleznyov said that the problem
of refugees and resettlers is very serious and explosive for Russia." At present,
more than 4,000,000 people in Russia are left without state support, citizenship,
homes and jobs, he noted.
The council was set up on the initiative of Duma deputies. It is expected to
become a permanent consultative body that will represent interests of Russian
people who emigrated from former Soviet republics to Russia. The council will
meet twice a year.
The body headed by Seleznyov consists of representatives of 15 migrant
associations in 12 Russian regions as well as members of Duma committees and
four Federation Council members.
According to the Russian Migration Service, more than 5,000,000 people
arrived in Russia from former Soviet republics over the period from June 1992
to January 1998. More than 1,100,000 of them were registered as refugees and
resettlers as of January 1998. Most of the migrants arrived from Kazakhstan (23
per cent), Tajikistan (15 per cent), Uzbekistan (14 per cent) and
Trans-Caucasian republics (18 per cent).
In 1997, the Russian government allocated about 1.1 trillion roubles to support
the refugees. A total of 84,000 people received allowances, 55, 000 received
loans to build or buy housing and 59,000 people was given one-time allowances
totaling five billion roubles.
New political party will be formed soon
President Karimov met with a group of people, the initiators of a new political party,
National Democratic Party "Patriots". This was something expected after his speech in
Samarkand and Navoi. There he fired the governors and spoke about the necessity of
forming a new political force made up mostly talented, determined and young people that
he could rely on, that he could implement his ideas and programs through.
This party is more likely to be the president's party on the forthcoming presidential
and parliamentary elections.
Uzbek 98 cotton crop lowest in 20 years
Uzbekistan produced 3.22 million tonnes of
raw cotton in 1998, the lowest harvest of the past 20 years and down sharply on
last year's 3.70 million, the Macroeconomic and Statistics Ministry said on
A ministry spokesman told Reuters the final crop figure would be announced by
the end of the year but was unlikely to vary significantly from preliminary results.
The ex-Soviet republic, which relies heavily on cotton for hard currency export
earnings, had planned to produce 4.0 million tonnes this year.
The sharp drop in output was caused by cold and wet weather, which meant
that 200,000 hectares of the total 1.53 million hectares sown to cotton had to be
Crop gathering by combine harvesters was only three percent of the crop,
compared with well over 56 percent in 1991. The rest was gathered by hand.
Yields fell because of reduced soil fertility, according to environmental analysts.
They said the long-term outlook for soil quality was poor.
Last year Uzbekistan exported 978,900 tonnes of cotton fibre out of the 1.08
million produced, earning $1.58 billion for state coffers.
Yeltsin signs decree on Ilyushin company
President Boris Yeltsin has signed a
decree aimed at the further development of the Ilyushin Russian-Uzbek
company, presidential spokesman Dmitry Yakushkin said at a briefing on Friday.
Ilyushin is a company of Russia, Uzbekistan and foreign investors. The Russian
share shall be no less than 51 percent. The decree aims to ensure conditions for
the production of aircraft competitive on the world markets, the spokesman
Uzbekistan aims for 3.0 % GDP budget deficit in 1999
Uzbekistan is forecasting a 1999 budget deficit
of around three percent of gross domestic product (GDP), up from 3.1 percent
in 1998, the head of parliament's committee on budget, banking and finance said
Abdurafik Akhadov told Reuters that the deficit would be covered by treasury
bill issues equal to 1.5 percent of GDP, central bank money printing of 1.0
percent of GDP and the rest by privatisation revenues.
Akhadov said budget spending next year was forecast at 548.0 billion sums
versus revenues of 601.8 billion.
Akhadov added that this year's deficit would be kept within the planned 3.1
percent of GDP, and would be financed by treasury bill issues and money
Uzbekistan plans to launch a major privatisation drive in 1999 and 2000, with
stakes in thirty of the former Soviet republic's biggest assets set to go under the
hammer, including the Almalyk copper plant and the Fergana oil refinery. ($ =
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