Uzbek president, US secretary of state discuss bilateral ties, regional cooperation


Uzbekistan’s President Shavkat Mirziyoyev on Wednesday discussed bilateral relations and regional cooperation with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in the capital Tashkent.

“A wide range of issues on the agenda of bilateral relations in the political, trade, economic, investment, educational, cultural and humanitarian spheres, as well as key aspects of regional cooperation were discussed,” said a statement by the Uzbek presidency.

Blinken conveyed Washington’s support for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Uzbekistan.

“Great progress was especially noted in the field of ensuring human rights and gender equality, combating forced labor, reforms in the field of freedom of speech and support for the media, development of civil society institutions and many other areas,” the statement said.

The statement also noted that the upward trend in Uzbekistan-US relations was underlined during the meeting, while “the importance of further development of full-scale cooperation was reaffirmed.”

It further noted that particular attention was paid to expanding cooperation in trade, economy, investment and innovation, and to bolstering the presence of leading US companies in the Uzbek market.

It also said that an exchange of views took place on the most important issues of regional cooperation, especially concerning the outcome of the ministerial meeting held between the US and Central Asian countries in the C5+1 format on Tuesday in Kazakhstan’s capital Astana.

“Great importance is attached to the upcoming meeting of the Council of the Framework Agreement on Trade and Investment (TIFA), which will be held this month in the city of Samarkand. Issues of broad international cooperation in matters of a peaceful settlement in Afghanistan were also considered,” the statement added.

Earlier in the day, Blinken met with his acting Uzbek counterpart Bakhtiyor Saidov, who said that he had a very productive meeting with the US secretary of state.

“Agreed to join our efforts towards creating better grounds for business exchanges, capacity building in Uzbekistan, strengthening regional security in Central Asia,” Saidov said on Twitter.

Blinken will travel to India’s capital New Delhi later in the day to participate in the G-20 foreign ministers’ meeting.

Source : AA