State-led cotton deregulation in Uzbekistan: Reforms and effects.

Etenesh B. Asfaw

Center for Policy Research and Outreach, Westminster International University in Tashkent. Istiqbol Str., 12, Mirabad Dist., Tashkent 100047


Research paper

This article belongs to the Special Section “30 years of farm restructuring and water management reforms in Central Asia”


Uzbekistan’s cotton supply chain experienced a wave of deregulation reforms in the last five years. This paper attempts to assess the process and results of the State-driven transition from the centrally planned cotton sector to private cotton-textile clusters. The article employs secondary data sources to analyse the effects of the deregulation policies descriptively. The study reveals that the deregulation reforms increased productivity in the sector. The reform initiatives also vertically integrated the cotton supply chain from production to marketing. However, the reforms failed to transparently incorporate and harmonise the needs of cotton farmers that grow and sell raw cotton. Consequently, the promises of the State-led deregulation reforms and initiatives are eroded. The article highlights the emerging risks and tensions in the current cotton liberalisation and privatisation reforms in Uzbekistan..

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For citation:  Asfaw, E. B. (2021). State-led cotton deregulation in Uzbekistan: Reforms and effects. Central Asian Journal of Water Research, 7(2), 121–137.


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cotton clusters, cotton deregulation, liberalization, privatization, supply chain

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