One such partner, Germany, recognised Uzbekistan’s independence on 31 December 1991 and established diplomatic relations on 6 March 1992, according to Jahon, a news agency.
Over the past quarter-century, Uzbekistan’s cooperation with Germany expanded to include over 140 agreements in various spheres.
The countries have upheld the high-level political dialogue. Uzbekistan’s First President Islam Karimov visited Germany in 1993, 1995, and 2001. In 1995, Uzbekistan welcomed Roman Herzog, Germany’s President, and in 2002, Gerhard Schröder, Germany’s Chancellor. First President Islam Karimov and German Chancellor Angela Merkel held a meeting at the UN summit in 2010.
In March 2016, under Germany’s presidency at OSCE, Frank-Walter Steinmeier paid an official visit to Uzbekistan and was received by the President.
Tashkent and Berlin took similar lines on the UN, OSCE and EU agenda on anti-terrorism efforts, crime, and drug trafficking.
As part of intergovernmental cooperation, the Legislative Chamber set up Uzbekistan-Germany, a Bundestag-connected group.
Uzbekistan and Germany held a dozen rounds of political talks, to discuss international agenda.
The countries also collaborate in civil society development, exchanging views and working out relevant policies.
In cooperation with the German Foundation for International Legal Cooperation (IRZ) and the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ), the countries initiated joint projects in law and ICT.
With trade and investment being cooperation priorities, Uzbekistan and Germany have put in place the Intergovernmental Working Group for Trade and Investment and the German-Uzbek Business Council.
A total of 113 German-backed businesses operate in Uzbekistan, with 27 of them fully owned by foreigners. The Foreign Economic Relations Ministry has accredited 36 German companies.
A testimony to Uzbek-German investment cooperation is joint production with MAN (trucks), CLAAS and Lemken (agricultural equipment), Knauf (building materials), and Deutsche Kabel (conductor materials).
Cultural and humanitarian ties are as important, with German being the second most studied language in Uzbekistan. Over 20 German universities are Uzbekistan’s educational partners, providing for student and teacher exchange programmes.
Goethe-Institut, the Konrad Adenauer and Friedrich Ebert foundations, and other German organisations have opened their offices in Uzbekistan and are realising education and healthcare projects.
German charities have given enormous help in healthcare. Soglom Avlod Uchun and Friedensdorf International together treat 15-20 children every year.
Under bilateral cooperation between Tashkent and Berlin, Samarkand and Bremen, and Bukhara and Bonn, there are a number of sustainable development and social projects.
Our German citizens are considered a bridge between the two countries, a topic constantly discussed at the Uzbek-German Intergovernmental Commission meetings.
Undoubtedly, the past experience and available potential will help develop our friendship and goodwill in the coming years.