Uzbekistan is one of Latvia’s co-operation partners in the Central Asian region. Along with the development of bilateral relations, Latvia, as an EU member state, supports closer relations of the EU with the countries of the Central Asian region, including the implementation of the EU Strategy for Central Asia.
Latvia and Uzbekistan traditionally have good political and economic relationship. The dialogue between the countries has been steadily evolving in recent years, and high level visits are regularly exchanged.
Political consultations between the Foreign Ministries and the meetings of the Intergovernmental Commission on economic issues are also held on a regular basis.
Timeline of Diplomatic Relations
Diplomatic relations between Latvia and Uzbekistan were established on 3 November 1992.
The Latvian Embassy in Tashkent was opened in November 1992, and the Embassy of Uzbekistan in Riga – in June 1995.
Bilateral relations were taken to a new level of quality with the appointment of ambassadors: the Ambassador of the Republic of Latvia to Uzbekistan was posted in November 1994, and the Ambassador of the Republic of Uzbekistan to Latvia – in August 2002.
Latvia's current Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Uzbekistan is Mihails Popkovs. Afzal Artykov is Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Uzbekistan to Latvia.
Prospective Fields of Cooperation
Promotion of Economic Cooperation
Latvia believes that the geographic location and economic potential of both countries makes it possible to place focus on expanding economic co-operation. Latvia welcomes the reform plans of Uzbekistan’s new political leadership aiming to improve the business and investment environment in the country: putting reforms in place can give fresh impetus to further cooperation. Latvia is prepared to provide support and share its experience of reforms, and Uzbekistan remains one of Latvia’s priority partner countries for development cooperation.
Latvia is interested in Uzbekistan making even greater use of logistics and distribution opportunities offered by Latvia for the export of Uzbekistan’s goods to Europe. Uzbekistan has a major role to play in the functioning of regional routes. We believe that new initiatives in transport and transit can stimulate economic integration, which is vital for joint efforts to reinforce security, stability and economic growth in the region.
Since an intercontinental flight was launched from Tashkent to New York via Riga, direct flights connecting the capital cities of Latvia and Uzbekistan have been highly important for fostering business and tourism links.
Pharmaceuticals, agriculture, food processing, information technologies, waste processing and green technologies, tourism and other areas have been identified by Latvian businesses as potential sectors for cooperation with Uzbekistan.
Work of the Intergovernmental Commission
A Latvia-Uzbekistan Intergovernmental Commission on economic, industrial, scientific and technical cooperation was established in 1998, and has since been functioning on a regular basis. Its competence lies in providing expert advice and solutions to topical issues concerning relations between the two countries. On 30 August 2017, the Intergovernmental Commission convened for its seventh meeting in Riga. Its participants set priorities for further cooperation in the areas such as transport and transit, tourism, education, green technologies, agriculture, ICT, and light industries. The countries have also established a good legal framework regulating economic cooperation.
Cooperation in Education
At the Latvian higher education institutions, Uzbek students are offered the opportunities to receive education by the European Union standards. Uzbekistan ranks second after Germany in terms of the number of foreign students at Latvia’s higher education institutions: there were more than 1000 students from Uzbekistan in Latvia in the academic year 2016/2017. Uzbek students are most interested in study programmes on transport, banking and finance, technical subjects, medicine, aviation, and in other fields.
Most Significant Visits and Meetings
|6-7 June 1995||State visit to Latvia by President Islam Karymov of Uzbekistan|
|22-25 May 1996||State visit to Uzbekistan by President Guntis Ulmanis of Latvia|
|26-28 November 1996||Official visit to Latvia by Speaker of the Legislative Chamber of the Uzbek Parliament, Erkin Halilov|
|11-12 April 1997||Official visit to Uzbekistan by Foreign Minister of Latvia, Valdis Birkavs|
|1-4 December 1997||Official visit to Uzbekistan by Speaker of the Saeima (Parliament), Alfrēds Čepānis|
|2-3 July 1998||Official visit to Latvia by Foreign Minister of Uzbekistan, Abdulaziz Kamilov|
|16-19 July 2002||Official visit to Uzbekistan by Foreign Minister of Latvia, Indulis Bērziņš|
|11-14 September 2002||Visit to Uzbekistan by Minister of the Interior of Latvia, Mareks Segliņš|
|27-28 February 2004||Official visit to Latvia by Foreign Minister of Uzbekistan, Sodiq Safoyev|
|7-8 April 2004||State visit to Latvia by President Islam Karymov of Uzbekistan|
|5-7 October 2008||State visit to Uzbekistan by President Valdis Zatlers of Latvia|
|24-26 February 2010||Working visit to Latvia by Deputy Foreign Minister of Uzbekistan, Rustam Tukhtabayev|
|6-8 July 2010||Visit to Uzbekistan by Foreign Minister of Latvia, Aivis Ronis|
|27-29 June 2011||Visit to Uzbekistan by a delegation of the Saeima group for cooperation with the Parliament of Uzbekistan, headed by Chairman Aleksandrs Sakovskis|
|30 June -1 July 2011||Visit to Uzbekistan by Ombudsman of Latvia, Juris Jansons|
|6-7 June 1995||State visit to Latvia by President Islam Karymov of Uzbekistan|
|25-26 November 2011||Visit to Uzbekistan by Minister of Health of Latvia, Ingrīda Circene|
|20-22 February 2012||Visit to Uzbekistan by Minister of the Interior of Latvia, Artis Pabriks, and Minister of Transport, Aivis Ronis|
|2-4 April 2012||Visit to Latvia by the delegation of the Parliament of Uzbekistan (Oliy Majlis) headed by Chairman of the Legislative Chamber, Boriy Alihanov|
|25 September 2012||Visit to Uzbekistan by Deputy Speaker of the Saeima (Parliament), Andrejs Klementjevs|
|16-17 May 2013||Visit to Uzbekistan by Foreign Minister of Latvia, Edgars Rinkēvičs|
|16-17 October 2013||Official visit to Latvia by President Islam Karymov of Uzbekistan|
|27-29 May 2014||State visit to Uzbekistan by President Andris Bērziņš of Latvia|
|7-12 October 2014||Visit to Uzbekistan by a delegation of the Saeima Foreign Affairs Committee headed by Ojārs Ēriks Kalniņš|
|8-10 June 2015||Working visit to Uzbekistan by Minister of Culture of Latvia, Dace Melbārde|
|19-23 October 2015||Visit to Uzbekistan by Minister of Environmental Protection and Regional Development of Latvia, Kaspars Gerhards|
|27-30 March 2017||Visit to Uzbekistan by Minister of Agriculture of Latvia, Jānis Dūklavs|
|15-18 May 2017||Official visit to Latvia by Chairman of the Senate of Uzbekistan, Nigmatilla Yuldashev|
|28-30 August 2017||Visit to Latvia by Minister of Foreign Economic Affairs of Uzbekistan, Elyor Ganiyev|
|23-24 October 2017||Visit to Uzbekistan by Minister of Environmental Protection and Regional Development of Latvia, Kaspars Gerhards|
Trade in goods, 1st half of 2017 (data by Central Statistical Bureau)
In terms of total goods turnover, Uzbekistan with 43.23 MEUR (0.36 % of Latvia’s total turnover in goods) ranked 32nd among Latvia’s foreign trade partners in 2017 Q1.
Latvia retains a positive balance of trade in goods with Uzbekistan amounting to 37.19 MEUR;
Total trade volumes have decreased by 20.83 %, or 11.37 MEUR, compared to the 1st half 2016.
In the 1st half 2017, Latvia’s exports to Uzbekistan amounted to 40.21 MEUR, which is 19.30 % or 9.62 MEUR less than for the same period in 2016.
In the 1st half 2017, Latvia’s imports from Uzbekistan amounted to 3.02 MEUR. This is 36.77 % or 1.76 MEUR less than for the same period in 2016.
Main commodities in exports from Latvia to Uzbekistan were products of chemical and allied industries (61.40 %); machinery and mechanical appliances; electrical equipment (22.47 %); plastics and articles thereof; rubber and articles thereof (4.34 %).
Main commodities in imports from Uzbekistan to Latvia were vegetable products (50.09 %); textiles and textile articles (25.19 %); metals and articles thereof (19.58 %); and mineral products (5.05 %).
Latvia–Uzbekistan trade from 2010 to 2017 Q2, EUR
|2010||12 125 435||6 750 103|
|2011||11 896 987||7 015 144|
|2012||18 771 668||6 583 567|
|2013||37 842 485||9 209 927|
|2014||49 808 198||8 972 131|
|2015||56 302 791||9 154 035|
|2016 Q2||49 825 327||4 772 894|
|2017 Q2||40 206 801||3 017 886|
Trade in Services 2017 Q1 (source: Bank of Latvia)
Turnover of trade in services with Uzbekistan – 10 MEUR (export – 6 MEUR; import – 4 MEUR).
In 2017 Q1, Latvia had a positive balance of services trade with Uzbekistan – 2 MEUR.
Investments (sources: Bank of Latvia, Lursoft)
According to the Bank of Latvia statistics, cumulative foreign direct investment from Uzbekistan in Latvia amounted to 31 MEUR at the end of 2017. Cumulative FDI of 2 MEUR from Latvia has been registered in Uzbekistan.
According to the Lursoft data, there were 368 companies of shared Latvian-Uzbek ownership registered with the Register of Enterprises of Latvia in August 2017. Uzbekistan’s direct investment in the equity capital of Latvian companies amounted to 8.32 MEUR, ranking 35th in terms of foreign investments into Latvian companies. Largest investments have been made by private persons.
President of Uzbekistan - http://www.press-service.uz/en
Uzbek Government portal - http://www.gov.uz/
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Uzbekistan - http://mfa.uz/
Ministry of Foreign Trade of Uzbekistan - http://www.mft.uz/
Delegation of the European Union to Uzbekistan: https://eeas.europa.eu/delegations/uzbekistan_en