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Woldemar Walter

Major challenges in the Uzbek transport sector

Traffic volumes have grown strongly in recent years in Uzbekistan. Passenger transport has increased by 5.9% p.a. between 2010 and 2019, which is high in international comparison. Road transport is the most important and fastest growing transport mode.

  • Uzbekistan
NL 15 | November-December 2021
Governance and Public Administration

In 2019, it accounted for almost 89% of total passenger transport. At the same time, the vehicle fleet in Uzbekistan is still relatively small with about 70 vehicles per 1000 inhabitants. Thus, growth is very likely to continue. This is a major challenge as investments are already struggling to keep up with maintenance and expansion of road and railway infrastructure.

However, apart from the size of funding there is also the question of spending efficiency. We see room for efficiency gains. Possible measures might include e.g. unbundling of regulation from control of assets in the road sector as well as private market access to road maintenance. For the railroad sector, we recommend separation of business units in infrastructure, passenger, and freight transport.

As a first step, however, we see the need to collect better data on the actual traffic flows and bottlenecks in Uzbekistan to be able to develop an integrated transportation strategy with clear goals and priorities.

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