Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev signed a decree Monday to deepen reforms in the textile industry to fully reprocess raw cotton domestically and increase export potential of the country.
The decree, titled "On measures to further deepen reforms and expand the export potential of the textile and garment and knitwear industry," instructs the government, within three months, to develop and approve the Concept of accelerated development of the textile and clothing-knitting industry for the period 2019-2025.
Under the concept Uzbekistan should be able to reprocess all the produced cotton domestically and increase the export volumes of textile products to 7 billion U.S. dollars per year by 2025, according to the document.
The decree also provides various stimulating measures for enterprises engaged in export of textile products starting from April 1, 2019.
Uzbekistan, the world's sixth-largest cotton producer, produced 2.3 million tons of raw cotton in 2018.
Traditionally, cotton is Uzbekistan's most important cash crop. But in recent years the country has been taking serious steps to develop its textile industry to produce value-added products rather than exporting raw cotton.
According to the statistics of the National Statistical Committee of Uzbekistan, the textile exports of Uzbekistan maintained a rapid growth in 2018. The annual export of textiles reached 1.6 billion U.S. dollars, up by 41.4 percent from the previous year.
"My biggest goal is to provide people with work, a source of income. From now on, we will export less cotton, process it in the country and produce value-added products," President Mirziyoyev said during his visit to Jizzakh region in 2018.