Uzbekistan is a country in central Asia which boarders Kazakhstan in the northern side, Kyrgyzstan in the eastern side and Tajikistan in the southern eastern side. During the 4th century B.C it was under the Persian rule that had been conquered by Alexander the Great.
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The region incorporated Islam as a religion in 8th century when the Arab forces invaded the land. Around the 13th century the region was taken over by the Mongols from the Seljuk Turks. The 16th century saw the region been merged with their neighbors but was not to last for long as the region broke into principalities (Adams 19).
However, the city-states, which included khanates, Kokand and Bukhara were not to last for long as the Russians conquered them in the 19th century. In 1924, the territory was a republic but it is in 1925 that it became an independent under socialist republic. However, in 1991 the country declared its independence making September 1st their national holiday. The country today enjoys independence with a presidential rule.
Economically, the people of Uzbekistan are agriculturalist, however, the country is endowed with many minerals. Cotton has been their main produce but has recently been replaced by natural gas. The other minerals that the Uzbekistan people are involved with are gold and uranium. The country has recently grown to be a manufacturing country, especially in the automobiles industrial where they are a big exporter to Russian market.
The state has always been in control of most business enterprises, but in the recent past free market has been endorsed (Oliker 46). It is not easy to determine the growth rate of the country because the government keeps unreliable records. However, it is notable much of the wealth of the country is held by the elite in the society with almost a quarter of the population living below the poverty line.
The government has been instrumental in preventing the country from facing capital outflow by ensuring that the country adopts the policy of substitution of their imports. The actions of the government to control economic activities have even made convertibility of different currencies of the world. The low economy has transformed to some of the individuals in the country getting involved to human trafficking business. The business usually involves girls, as they are traffics to other countries as prostitutes (Boĭkova 181).
Amongst the people of Uzbekistan, the elders are the most respected people in the society. They have a mode of greetings where the men put their hands on the heart of other men when greeting them, while women usually put their right hands on each other’s elbow. The mode of dressing especially to women was such that they were to cover their bodies with their heads looking down to avoid any attention. The people of Uzbekistan are mostly Muslims with a small percentage of people enjoying other religions like Buddhist and Jewish.
Traditionally, matters of marriage were left to the man and the women but the approval of the parent was important. Virginity among the women was upheld and women were expected to be married much earlier than the men. Bride price had to be paid by the family of the man, and the cost incurred in the marriage ceremony was covered by the family of the wife (Hanks 83).
There were defined duties of both men and women. While men were expected to work outside, the house women were expected to work indoors engaging in activities like weaving and spinning using cotton. Women were expected to cover the whole of their bodies when in public and they viewed it as observance of their faith (Adams 17). Traditional medicine was also incorporated in their treatment where herbs were used for treatment.
There was also a taboo of drinking cold drinks since it was viewed as the reason why people caught cold. Arts performance that dated back during the soviet rule is still practiced. They include the crafts work as well as miniature painting. However, the practice of their music by the instruments they used in past is still in practice. Dotars that were put on the legs, flutes, and small drums are still used in the performance of their art.
Unlike other countries in central Asia, Uzbekistan has adhered to the principle of legal stability. The constitution gives rights to the people to own private property and it views it as a way of giving self-respect to the people as well as a way of developing the society. Solid constitutional bases have been laid down through the years to promote and upgrade political and social relations.
Economic freedom of the citizens has been highly promoted as well as the spirit of entrepreneurship with an aim of eliminating the repugnant old command-administrative system. The country has also incorporated a legal and organization environment where the society of Uzbekistan integrates with the world. Uzbekistan has adopted an open door policy that grants foreign investors reliable regal guarantee and broad economic opportunities in the economic activities.
The environment for foreign investors has continually been improved as well as simplification of the procedures that are involved in creation of manufacturing enterprise for foreigners (Karimov 172). Regulatory acts created by Uzbekistan have had a comprehensive system of taxation and incentive against poetical and commercial risk for the foreigners. In turn, there has been active participation by foreign investors in this country.
Some of their favorable policies to the foreigners are: freedom of buying property that the state has already privatized as well as ownership rights to these properties. Enterprises owned by foreigners are allowed to export without licenses as well to import duty free property from joint ventures (Karimov 173).
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Economic relations between Uzbekistan and the United States have mostly been controlled by the bi-literal trade agreement signed by the two countries. The agreement was signed in 1994 and one of the benefits the agreements had to Uzbekistan was that it had an exemption provision to many of the United States importing tariffs.
In the year 2000, the two countries signed a bilateral investment treaty but it did not come into force because of the weak economic reforms in Uzbekistan. In terms of imports and exports, Uzbekistan imports machines and equipment. Also inclusive in the list of the imports are chemical products and food items, especially the ones that deal in plastics. The exports to the United States include inorganic chemistry products machines and equipment (Group Taylor & Francis 2548).
American companies have also been involved in investing in Uzbekistan economy in establishment of technological base in both agriculture and mining sectors.
Infrastructure and food processing are also other sectors of the economy where American companies have actively involved themselves in. The American company General Motors has also established a strong link with the government of Uzbekistan and collaborated in manufacturing of cars. It is also notable that Uzbekistan is the biggest export of uranium in United States (Zhukov 213).
The relation between United States and Uzbekistan can be traced back to 1991 when Uzbekistan was established as an independent nation. The following year saw the establishment of Uzbekistan embassy in United States. From that time, as part of the U.S policy, campaigns have been launched to support Uzbekistan upheld the rule of law.
The relationship between the two countries increased after September 11 attacks, which led to the war in Afghanistan. However, the closeness between the two countries went a drift when United States requested the international community to get involved in investigating the Andijon violence of 2005.
The reason behind sourness in the relations on was because Uzbekistan did not want involvement of United States or other European powers in influencing the government activities. However, year 2007 saw the two countries improving the relationship among them (Thackrah 240).
The relations were all round as they included security issues civil issues as well as economic issues. It is also an attempt by the United States to ensure that there is peace in central Asia since Uzbekistan is the country with the biggest population and the most instrumental in keeping stability.
The new relation between the two countries has since to improve to the best as in the United States assistance budget there was a provision that seeks to ensure better livelihood for the people of Uzbekistan (Group Taylor & Francis 554). The relationship between the two countries has also promoted the level of education in Uzbekistan as many students from Uzbekistan have studied in American universities.
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Thackrah, John Richard. “Dictionary of terrorism.” New York: Routledge , 2004. Print
Zhukov, Boris Z. Rumer Stanislav Vi︠a︡cheslavovich. “Central Asia: the challenges of independence.” New York: M.E. Sharpe , 1998. Print