TASHKENT: The Islamic Development Bank is launching an economic development fund in Uzbekistan backed by Saudi private-sector investors.
The Economic Empowerment Fund for Uzbekistan (EEFU has an initial capital of $100 million, and will target 34,000 micro, small, and medium enterprises, with the aim of rising to $500 million, the IsDB said in a press release.
It is expected to generate 102,000 jobs, and help address poverty in the country.
The government of Uzbekistan will contribute 35 percent to the initial $100 million, the IsDB will contribute 20 percent and the remaining 45 percent will mainly come from Saudi investors.
"The ultimate goal of the Fund is to foster widespread economic empowerment in Uzbekistan by targeting the bottom of the economic pyramid through involving the marginalized populations in productive projects across entire value chains locally," the IsDB said.
"The Fund will be equipped with an annexed Technical Assistance (TA) facility to bring additional support and address major non-financial constraints faced by prospective beneficiaries including business engineering, capacity building programs, access to market, building partnerships etc.," it said.
The new economic fund is part of the IsDB’s series of development activities in Uzbekistan, which so far stand at $2.4 billion in value.