TACHKENT – The Asian Development Bank (AfDB) and the government of Uzbekistan signed the loan agreement for a $ 93 million loan approved by the bank in December, to help improve the skills development of young people and unemployed job seekers in the country.
Uzbekistan Finance Minister Temur Ishmetov and AfDB Country Director for Uzbekistan Cindy Malvicini signed the agreement in Tashkent.
“Uzbekistan has prioritized the development of human capital to ensure that its people have the skills necessary to thrive in the modern Uzbek economy,” said Ms. Malvicini. “We are pleased to formalize this loan which will support the government’s efforts to achieve this ambitious goal, stimulate employment, improve competitiveness and, ultimately, increase inclusive growth in Uzbekistan.
The AfDB’s skills development project for a modern economy aims to develop a skilled workforce in five priority trades: construction; textiles and clothing; information and communication technologies; agro-industry and food processing; and repair and maintenance of machinery.
At least 60,000 people, including 48,000 unemployed job seekers and 500 disabled people will benefit from the project. The project will also benefit industries looking for skilled workers and return migrants looking to retrain or recognize their achievements in the target areas.
The agreement was signed at the Uzbekistan Economic Forum, a high-level conference organized by the government to discuss ongoing economic reforms in Uzbekistan. Human capital development was a key theme of the event which hosted a panel discussion on the potential of education, technical skills and entrepreneurship to boost inclusive growth and reduce poverty.
Uzbekistan joined the ADB in 1995. Since then, the ADB has committed loans, grants and technical assistance amounting to US $ 10.1 billion for Uzbekistan.
The AfDB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while continuing its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. Founded in 1966, it is owned by 68 members, including 49 from the region.