Tajikistan approves Chinese plan to construct security base near Afghan border

Kanat Shaku in Almaty October 28, 2021

Dushanbe reportedly has also offered to transfer full control of existing, unacknowledged, base to Beijing. Chinese worried Afghanistan situation could benefit separatist East Turkistan Islamic Movement.

bneGREEN: UN warns that net-zero pledges are insufficient and not urgent enough

By Richard Lockhart in Edinburgh October 27, 2021

A majority of G20 net-zero pledges made so far are not strong enough and are not backed up by meaningful and effective promises of action.

bneGREEN: EU MEPs back binding methane targets

bne IntelliNews October 25, 2021

In a resolution on the EU’s strategy for cutting methane emissions, MEPs voted 563 to 122 in favour of introducing binding measures and targets on methane abatement, in order to significantly reduce emissions by 2030, in line with Paris goals.

Uzbekistan’s president Shavkat Mirziyoyev wins re-election with landslide

Ben Aris in Tashkent October 24, 2021

Incumbent swept the board, but the race was largely uncontested.

UK ‘tells trapped Afghan interpreters to escape on their own’

bne IntelIiNews October 20, 2021

Advice reportedly seen in emails tells former employees who served British armed forces to “actively consider evacuating to a third country”. Former UK government aid programme manager calls situation “morally indefensible”.

Russia’s coronavirus spike threatens the whole region

bne IntelliNews October 20, 2021

Vaccine scepticism means just under a third of the Russian population is vaccinated and the government admitted last week that it had “lost the information campaign” to persuade its people to take the pandemic seriously.

OPINION: Afghanistan’s neighbours recast refugee finance formula

Gary Kleiman of Kleiman Intl Consultants Inc October 16, 2021

Neighbouring markets could be tapped as part of the global refugee fundraising effort, and bridge the tens of billions of dollars annual gap in UN appeals.

Efforts to deploy US counterterrorism forces in Uzbekistan may not be over

Muzaffar Ismailov in Tashkent & Will Conroy in Prague October 16, 2021

Tashkent holds firmly to ‘No’ but Putin underlines difficulty of Afghanistan situation by saying intelligence indicates 2,000 Islamic State members may be present in north of country alone.

Uzbekistan rights ombudswoman says she is on top of Karimova case

Eurasianet October 14, 2021

The government-appointee is monitoring the case of Gulnara Karimova, the jailed daughter of the late former president, but that may not be enough to assuage concerns.

Uzbekistan’s economy bouncing back strongly, World Bank ups 2021 GDP forecast to 6.2%

Ben Aris in Berlin October 13, 2021

As one of only two major economies in the world to avoid recession last year, the Uzbek economy is recovering robustly from the coronacrisis crisis. The World Bank has increased the growth forecast to 6.2% for this year.

Turkmenistan: YouCensorship

Akhal-Teke: Eurasianet October 13, 2021

Eurasianet’s weekly Turkmenistan briefing: Berdimuhamedov goes travelling and lectures the WHO, while YouTube bows to Turkmen censors and takes down Eurasianet’s channel.

Fitch: Uzbek banking sector faces increasing asset quality risks

Ben Aris in Berlin October 10, 2021

The Uzbek banking sector faces increasing asset quality risks due to rapid lending growth, high balance sheet dollarisation and an increased reliance on external funding, Fitch Ratings said in a report released on October 8.

Reports warn Tajik militant group in Afghanistan may be poised to attack Tajikistan

bne IntelIiNews October 8, 2021

Russian media say group may be beyond Taliban’s control. Moscow says Russia stands ready to protect its ally from any incursion.

CENTRAL ASIA BLOG: Uzbeks wonder why they’re suffering neverending gasoline price hikes

bne IntelIiNews October 7, 2021

Rather than pay steep prices, many motorists in Uzbekistan hook up dangerous gas cylinders to their vehicles to access cheaper fuel. The “liberalised market” is not working for them.

AFC CAPITAL: Uzbekistan’s capital markets entering Phase II

Scott Osheroff October 6, 2021

Phase I re-rating has seen listed equities go from “never should have been so cheap” to now value-oriented and buttressed by strong profit growth profiles.

bneGREEN: SEB puts $4 trillion annual price tag on net zero

By Richard Lockhart in Edinburgh October 1, 2021

SEB’s latest Green Bonds Report has placed a price of $4 trillion per year on the energy transition if the world is to reach net zero by 2050.

Kremlin responds to opposing troops building up on Tajikistan-Afghanistan border

bne IntelIiNews October 1, 2021

It meanwhile emerges that US is in talks on using Central Asian bases for over-the-horizon counter-terrorism operations in Taliban-controlled nation.

Taliban and Tajikistan engage in sabre-rattling

Eurasianet October 1, 2021

Dushanbe has irked the Taliban by offering a haven to its foes.

Tashkent conference aims to lure new investors

Muzaffar Ismailov in Tashkent September 30, 2021

Uzbekistan showcased its reform progress at an international investment summit in Tashkent. The government has already sold off a Coca-Cola bottling business and one large bank. It plans at least two more IPOs of state-owned companies this year.

Uranium: what the explosion in prices means for the nuclear industry

Edward Thomas Jones & Danial Hemmings, & Simon Middleburgh September 28, 2021

The primary fuel for nuclear plants was sliding for much of the 2010s, with no signs of a major turnaround. Yet since mid-August, prices have surged by around 60% as investors and speculators scramble to snap up the commodity.