As part of the visit of the delegation of Uzbekistan headed by Foreign Minister Vladimir Norov, First Deputy Chairman of the Senate of the Oliy Majlis Sodik Safoev met with Senator Roger Wicker (Mississippi), as well as Congressmen Adam Smith (Washington), Pete Sessions (Texas), Don Bacon (Nebraska) in Washington on December 12-14, by Ami Bera (California), Steve Chabot (Ohio) and Lloyd Smacker (Pennsylvania).
According to the Embassy of Uzbekistan, during the talks, the American side was thoroughly acquainted with the current dynamics of relations between our country and the United States, the ongoing reforms in the republic, as well as the efforts being made to join the WTO. During the negotiations, the objective and comprehensively reasoned position of Uzbekistan on the Jackson-Vanik amendment was also brought to the congressmen and a request was voiced to support the abolition of its application against the republic.
During a meeting with a Republican senator from Mississippi Roger Wicker, the American legislator highly appreciated the achieved level of bilateral relations, confirmed his readiness to contribute to strengthening and expanding the strategic partnership of the United States with Uzbekistan.
Senator Roger Wicker supported Uzbekistan’s position on the Jackson-Vanik amendment, as, according to him, the document has lost the legal grounds for its application to independent states, including Uzbekistan. “I will call on my colleagues in the Senate to support the repeal of the Jackson-Vanik amendment in relation to Uzbekistan,” the senator stressed.
During negotiations with the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Asia, Pacific and Central Asia in the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the U.S. Congress, Ami Bera and his deputy According to Steve Chabot, the American legislators assured of providing all possible assistance in Uzbekistan’s accession to the World Trade Organization, stressing that this is important for the development of bilateral trade. According to them, Tashkent’s resolute policy towards accelerated accession to the WTO testifies to the country’s readiness to carry out equal and open trade relations with all countries of the world. “This is a clear signal to external investors to launch major projects in Uzbekistan,” the congressmen said.
Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, Congressman Adam Smith welcomed Tashkent’s active regional policy, which has become a decisive factor in deepening cooperation between the Central Asian countries. Congressman Adam Smith was informed of Uzbekistan’s position on the importance of ensuring the interconnectedness of the regions of Central and South Asia and, in this regard, the development of a network of transport corridors. In this context, the need to support the construction projects of the trans-Afghan transport corridor was emphasized. The Congressman agreed that the implementation of this project will contribute to regional development.
During negotiations with a member of the “Caucus on Uzbekistan” in the US Congress, a congressman Don Bacon paid special attention to the implementation of the agreements reached during the visit of the US Congressional delegation to Uzbekistan in 2021. The Congressman intends to promote the establishment of partnership between Uzbekistan and Nebraska technology companies in the production of modern irrigation systems. In this regard, the Congressman assured that his office will soon submit concrete, well-founded project proposals for joint implementation with the Government of Uzbekistan.
Republican Congressman Pete Sessions said that Uzbekistan is a very important partner for the United States. According to him, bilateral relations should increasingly acquire the spirit of strategic cooperation. Pete Sessions said that, as a member of the “Caucus on Uzbekistan”, he is determined to actively protect and promote the interests of our republic in Congress. He stressed that he is ready to become a co-author of resolutions in support of Uzbekistan, as well as to involve other American legislators in the Caucus.
A member of the House Committee on Ways and Means, Congressman Lloyd Smacker said that today Uzbekistan and the United States have significantly expanded their bilateral political and economic partnership. In this regard, as he noted, the existence of discriminatory acts on interaction with the republic, even nominal ones, does not correspond to the spirit of strategic partnership. According to him, the Jackson-Vanik amendment is a relic of the last century. The American legislator will work with his colleagues from the Ways and Methods Committee and urge them to speed up the process of adopting the relevant bill at the upcoming hearings of the US Congress.
During the meetings, representatives of the Congress highly appreciated the efforts of the Government of Uzbekistan to intensify the process of the country’s accession to the WTO. According to them, the accession of Uzbekistan will give US companies a competitive advantage in the Uzbek market, affecting the creation of jobs and the growth of American exports.
According to the Embassy of Uzbekistan, following the meetings with American legislators, an agreement was reached to maintain regular contacts on topical issues of the bilateral agenda, including inter-parliamentary relations. Representatives of the US Congress expressed their readiness to receive parliamentary delegations of Uzbekistan, as well as to consider the possibility of joining the next visit of the Congressional delegation to Uzbekistan in 2023.
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