A webinar was held on the theme “The state and trends in the development of digital technologies in Uzbekistan”

On March 23, with the participation of the Europe-Uzbekistan Association for Economic Cooperation (EUROUZ) and the Association of European Businesses (AEB), in cooperation with the Ministry of Digital Technologies of the Republic of Uzbekistan and IT Park Uzbekistan, with the support of the EU Delegation to Uzbekistan, a webinar was held on the topic “The state and trends development of digital technologies in Uzbekistan”.

The webinar, moderated by Oybek Shaykhov, EUROUZ Secretary-General and Louis Skyner, EUROUZ Board Member and Partner at Dentons, featured high-ranking speakers: Minister of Digital Technologies of the Republic of Uzbekistan Sherzod Shermatov, Director of IT Park Uzbekistan Farhod Ibragimov, co-founder and director of Plug and Play Uzbekistan Felix Lammers and Revotech Development and Innovation Manager Gulsara Sharipova.

More than 100 European companies took part in the online discussion. The speakers presented a detailed analysis of the opportunities, development and growing presence of international IT companies in Uzbekistan.

Minister of Digital Technologies Sherzod Shermatov emphasized the governmentʼs efforts in education to nurture young personnel with the necessary skills to work  in outsourcing in European companies without having to leave Uzbekistan.

The Minister also emphasized Uzbekistanʼs interest in promoting opportunities to increase revenues from IT exports in the European market.

“While most EU companies are looking for ways to optimize costs in order to remain competitive in the global market, we are committed to making Uzbekistan the next destination for IT outsourcing. To do this, we provide international IT companies with the best conditions, including the necessary infrastructure, legislative framework and tax incentives, human capital and government support”, – Sherzod Shermatov said at the end of his speech.

This topic was supported by the next speaker, Director of IT Park Uzbekistan Farhod Ibragimov, who spoke about the work carried out by IT Park to develop the digital ecosystem of Uzbekistan by providing tax preferences, launching regional branches of IT Park, IT- and BPO-Centers, investing in IT education and initiation of corporate accelerators.

“IT Park already has a representative office in the United States, and in 2022 a representative office was opened in Germany to establish cooperation between companies in Europe and Uzbekistan, at the moment the main percentage of outsourcing comes to the United States, and we would very much like to increase the percentage of European companies. We are also ready to cooperate and work with companies from Europe in opening their offices in Uzbekistan and providing them with opportunities for this.

On March 18, the first Plug and Play acceleration program was launched in Uzbekistan, aimed at developing startups created in Uzbekistan, bringing them to the international market and attracting investments. This is a big step for the development of a startup ecosystem in the region and subsequent international cooperation”.

The Head of IT Park also gave statistics, speaking about the potential of Uzbekistan in the future:

“Over the past six years, IT Parkʼs service exports have grown from 700 thousand US dollars in 2017 to 140 million US dollars in 2022. According to forecasts, the export volume for 2023 will be 300 million US dollars, and by 2025 the volume of exports is expected to be at the level of 1 billion US dollars”, –  he concluded.

Felix Lammers, co-founder and director of Plug and Play Uzbekistan, praised the Uzbek entrepreneurs and innovative culture, noting that one of the main reasons for Plug and Play Uzbekistan to enter the Uzbek market is the huge potential of the country.

“We see an amazing opportunity in a market with a population of 36 million people, most of whom are well-educated, young and driven entrepreneurs willing to work on ideas for development not only regionally but also internationally. We want to see Uzbekistan as a real driver of IT initiatives around the world, turning it into a real BPO provider country, indispensable for the global market”.

Gulsara Sharipova presented the example of RevoTech, which became one of the first residents of IT Park. Starting a few years ago with a minor accounting job, RevoTech is now able to perform functions ranging from data entry to financial projections, showing by example the unlimited growth potential that awaits every company in Uzbekistan.

The webinar ended with a Q&A session, during which participants were able to ask detailed questions to government representatives about future plans and goals for IT development in Uzbekistan.