MUSCAT ó Oman and Uzbekistan have concluded a pact to establish a joint investment fund with an authorised capital of $500 million and paid up capital of $100 million.
It was signed between the State Public Reserve Fund and the Construction and Development Fund in Uzbekistan here on Monday, the second and last day of an official visit to Oman by Uzbek President Islam Karimov.
The fund, which will be based in Tashkent, will be 75 per cent owned by the Sultanate and 25 per cent by Uzbekistan. National Economy Minister Ahmed bin Abdulnabi Macki signed the accord for Oman and Rustam Azimov, Minister of Finance, for Uzbekistan.
The two sides also signed a commercial and economic cooperation agreement, an MoU for cooperation between the National Economy Ministry and the Uzbek Foreign Economic Affairs, Investment and Trade Ministry, and a draft MoU for food security cooperation. Another deal was concluded for building a cement plant in Uzbekistan between the Oman Investment Fund and the Foreign Economic Affairs, Investment and Trade Ministry of Uzbekistan and the Uzbek Oil and Gas Company. Also on Monday, an agreement and three MoUs were signed between the Oman Oil Company and Uzbek Oil and Gas company. While the agreement covers bilateral cooperation between the two companies, the MoUs relates to cooperation in the production of polyethylene and polyethylene chloride and the possibility of joint investment in petrochemical plants
Macki said the agreements signified a mutual desire by the two governments to “achieve joint economic and investment cooperation.” He underlined the sultanate’s “good experience” in foreign investment through the State General Reserve Fund, Oman Investment Fund and Oman Oil company. “Having investment ventures in Uzbekistan has many advantages as the country is located in the heart of Central Asia and is undergoing rapid economic growth. Moreover, it has abundant natural resources, such as oil, gas, agricultural land and human resources,” he added. Macki also said that both countries enjoyed “political stability, security, distinguished geographic location and both encourage investment.”