The Uzbek economy grew by robust 5.6% in 2019 on the back of high investment. For 2020, growth is expected to reach 6%.
Strong exports helped to decrease the current account deficit to 3.3% of GDP in 2019. At the same time, FDI increased to 1.8% of GDP and is thus mirroring reform efforts. FDI is expected to become an important source for financing the current account deficit in the future.
International reserves increased to high USD 29.2 bn by the end of 2019. The Sum’s depreciation by 12% vs the US dollar in 2019 was driven by market forces. Inflation remained high in 2019 and increased to 15.2% in December 2019, also due to higher energy tariffs. Fiscal policy remains prudent: the budget deficit amounted to moderate 1.6% of GDP in 2019 and is expected to remain at this level in the coming years. Public debt equals 23.3% of GDP and is rather low by international comparison.
All in all, Uzbekistan shows robust investment-led growth with stable fiscal policy and increasing FDI. The government shows a remarkable pace at implementing economic reforms and plans to continue this course in coming years, including more complex reforms in the banking sector, privatisation and investment climate. The implementation of these reforms should give a further boost to the Uzbek economy.