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TASHKENT (TCA) — A number of important agreements aimed at expanding economic and trade cooperation have been reached before and during the ongoing state visit of Uzbekistan President Shavkat Mirziyoyev to the Republic of Korea, the Jahon information agency reports.

The Ministry for Foreign Trade of Uzbekistan and the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy of the Republic of Korea discussed the possibility of establishing a free trade zone and reached agreement on the need to ensure preferential access to the markets of the two countries.

In this regard, heads of the ministries adopted a decision on holding the first meeting of the joint working group until the end of this year. The meeting is set to contribute to the preparation of a bilateral Agreement on preferential trade between Uzbekistan and the Republic of Korea.

The Export-Import Bank Korea Eximbank and the National Bank of Uzbekistan have signed a loan agreement worth $150 million.

The agreement is expected to provide a credit line for financing small business and investment projects involving the acquisition of equipment, goods and services of Korean production.

The credit line is set to cover projects in the areas of agriculture, food industry, medicine, production of construction materials, and automotive industry.

Before the president’s visit to South Korea, on November 16-18, a delegation of Uzbekengilsanoat light-industry JSC held a number of meetings and negotiations in Seoul.

Following meetings with heads of large Korean trading companies Posco Daewoo, Color of Paradise, Solsang International Corp, RATEL E&T co., Ltd, Korea Factory and trading networks Lotte Mart, the parties reached agreements (contracts and protocols of intentions) to export $70 million worth of textile products from Uzbekistan to Korea in 2017-2018.

The Agency for development of the pharmaceutical industry under the Ministry of Health of Uzbekistan has reached an agreement on organization of production of highly effective Korean medicines in Uzbekistan.

The Korean side will invest $25 million in direct investments. Agreements were reached with such leading Korean companies as Dalim BioTech, Yuhan Corporation and Erae.

Special attention was paid to the organization of 7 new pharmaceutical free economic zones in Uzbekistan.

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