Review of events in Central Asia
A regular meeting of the Board of the International Fund for Saving the Aral Sea was held in Ashgabat. Representatives of the Central Asian republics exchanged views on the development and implementation of projects in accordance with the Program of Action for Assistance to the Countries of the Aral Sea Basin, the press service of Turkmenistan’s Foreign Ministry reported. The decision on creation of expert groups was approved at the meeting. They will consult with international organizations and partners to promote the development of the Regional Environmental Protection Program for the Sustainable Development of Central Asia.
The European Union will finance the Regional Small Business Programme (RSBP) on development of small and medium-sized private enterprises (SMEs) in Central Asia. The project will be implemented by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), Trend news agency reports. The EBRD will provide financial institutions in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan with new digital business tools for business development. The RSBP will establish a knowledge-sharing platform accessible to financial institutions providing loans for entrepreneurs. Seminars and trainings will cover various topics, including credit ratings and financial analysis systems. The program’s partner in Kazakhstan will be the ‘Damu’ Entrepreneurship Development Fund.
Uzbekistan is actively introducing smart technologies in tourism sphere. QR-codes are being set up at historical sites. UzDaily reported that, the project is being implemented in Samarkand and Kashkadarya regions. Bar code system has been set up in monuments, hotels, restaurants and other tourist sites. The work is planned to be completed by April, experts say. Information about the sights will be available in 12 languages. Tourists will be able to receive information about each attraction by scanning the code with their tablets or smartphones. Previously, such QR codes appeared on historical and cultural monuments of Khiva and Bukhara.