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Guarantee Fund to appear in Uzbekistan in support of small business

17 February 2017

Guarantee Fund will be established in Uzbekistan for small business development.

President Shavkat Mirzizyoyev signed the relevant decree on February 10, 2017.

The fund is created in form of Joint Stock Company. The State Competition Committee for privatization, demonopolization and development of competition acts as the main founder of the Fund, while the Association of Banks of Uzbekistan, Chamber of Commerce, as well as a number of large banks and insurance companies act as its shareholders.

The Fund is established in order to further improve the business climate and accelerate the development of entrepreneurship.

The Guarantee Fund is intended to provide security to banks for loans granted to small businesses, to the extent not covered by the pledge of up to 50% of the loan amount, but not more than $100,000.

The Fund will also provide assistance to small businesses on the terms of obtaining the bank loans and creation of high-tech and innovative production capacities.

Uzbekistan's business environment is among the most challenging in the world. Lack of collateral is one of the main obstacles in obtaining bank credit by small businesses. Meantime, it is the most common reason for refusing a credit.

One of the key economic problems faced by Uzbekistan is to adjust the country’s economic model; public policies and incentives are currently directed toward the industrial policies that favor enterprises with state shares (SOEs) rather than private sector enterprises.

Current government policies are also weighted toward investments in mining and other industrial SOEs rather than in non-commodity production and in exports by private enterprises in manufacturing, agriculture, and services as engines of future growth, according to the WB.