The 5 biggest exports by value from Uzbekistan are gold, cotton yarn, refined copper and unwrought alloys, petroleum gases, and ethylene polymers. Combined, that quintet of leading exports represents 61.4% of Uzbekistan’s overall shipments during 2020.
Uzbekistan’s Major Trading Partners
The latest available country-specific data shows that 91.9% of products exported from Uzbekistan were bought by importers in: China (19.2% of the global total), Russia (17.4%), Turkey (14.2%), Kazakhstan (11%), Kyrgyzstan (10.7%), Afghanistan (8.6%), Tajikistan (4.3%), Iran (2%), Ukraine (1.8%), Pakistan (1.5%), Turkmenistan (1.1%) and Poland (0.9%).
Given Uzbekistan’s population of 33.9 million people, its total $13.1 billion in 2020 exports translates to roughly $400 for every resident in the Central Asian nation.
Uzbekistan’s Top 10 Exports
The following export product groups represent the highest dollar value in Uzbekistani global shipments during 2020. Also shown is the percentage share each export category represents in terms of overall exports from Uzbekistan.
- Gems, precious metals: US$6 billion (45.3% of total exports)
- Cotton: $1.2 billion (9.1%)
- Copper: $729.1 million (5.6%)
- Mineral fuels including oil: $642.3 million (4.9%)
- Fruits, nuts: $577.8 million (4.4%)
- Knit or crochet clothing, accessories: $459.3 million (3.5%)
- Vegetables: $400.4 million (3.1%)
- Plastics, plastic articles: $324.4 million (2.5%)
- Milling products, malt, starches: $219.5 million (1.7%)
- Vehicles: $207.5 million (1.6%)
Uzbekistan’s top 10 exports accounted for 81.6% of the overall value of its global shipments.
Gems and precious metals was the fastest grower among the top 10 export categories, up by 12,521% from 2019 to 2020. That growth was propelled by higher reported international revenues from exported gold.
In second place for improving export sales was milling products, malt and starches via a 109.2% gain.
Uzbekistan’s shipments of knitted or crocheted clothing and accessories posted the third-fastest gain in value up by 42%.
The leading decliner among Uzbekistan’s top 10 export categories was mineral fuels including oil thanks to a -74.6% drop year over year. Exports of petroleum gas experienced the biggest reduction.
From the more granular four-digit Harmonized Tariff System code level, gold represents Uzbekistan ’s most valuable exported product at 44.2% of the country’s total. In second place were cotton yarn (7.1%) trailed by refined copper and unwrought alloys (4.4%), petroleum gases (3.6%), ethylene polymers (2%), wheat or meslin flour (1.7%) and dried shelled vegetables (1.5%).
The following types of Uzbekistani product shipments represent positive net exports or a trade balance surplus. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports.
In a nutshell, net exports represent the amount by which foreign spending on a home country’s goods or services exceeds or lags the home country’s spending on foreign goods or services.
- Gems, precious metals: US$5.9 billion (Up by 27,.336% since 2019)
- Cotton: $1.2 billion (Down by -7.4%)
- Copper: $702.3 million (Up by 4.1%)
- Fruits, nuts: $533.6 million (Down by -9.2%)
- Knit or crochet clothing, accessories: $441.3 million (Up by 50%)
- Vegetables: $352.8 million (Down by -19.5%)
- Zinc: $151.6 million (Down by -25.7%)
- Milling products, malt, starches: $102.3 million (Reversing a -$7,000 deficit)
- Knit or crochet fabric: $99.4 million (Up by 129.3%)
- Silk: $74.9 million (Up by 4.3%)
Uzbekistan has notably positive net exports in the international trade of gold. In turn, these cashflows indicate Uzbekistan’s strong competitive advantages under the gems and precious metals category.
Uzbekistan incurred an overall -$6.8 billion trade deficit for 2020, declining by -9.1% from -$7.5 billion in red ink one year earlier.
Below are exports from Uzbekistan that result in negative net exports or product trade balance deficits. These negative net exports reveal product categories where foreign spending on home country Uzbekistan’s goods trail Uzbekistani importer spending on foreign products.
- Machinery including computers: -US$4.7 billion (Down by -15.9% since 2019)
- Vehicles: -$1.6 billion (Down by -16.9%)
- Iron, steel: -$1.15 billion (Up by 3.1%)
- Pharmaceuticals: -$1.13 billion (Up by 23.2%)
- Electrical machinery, equipment: -$1.05 billion (Down by -7.6%)
- Optical, technical, medical apparatus: -$626 million (Up by 7.9%)
- Cereals: -$577.2 million (Up by 50.2%)
- Wood: -$562.5 million (Down by -0.8%)
- Articles of iron or steel: -$461.1 million (Down by -38.5%)
- Mineral fuels including oil: -$451.5 million (Reversing a $1.6 billion surplus)
Uzbekistan has highly negative net exports and therefore deep international trade deficits under the machinery including computers product category.
Uzbekistani Export Companies
Not one Uzbekistani corporation ranks among Forbes Global 2000.
Wikipedia lists exports-related companies from Uzbekistan. Selected examples are shown below.
- Avialeasing (cargo airliner)
- MAN Auto-Uzbekistan (vehicles)
- Navoi Mining and Metallurgy Combinat (uranium, precious metals)
- SamKochAvto (buses, trucks)
- Tashkent Aviation Production Assoc. (aircraft)
- Uzbekneftegaz (oil, gas)
In macroeconomic terms, Uzbekistan’s total exported goods represent 4.9% of its overall Gross Domestic Product for 2020 ($270 billion valued in Purchasing Power Parity US dollars). That 4.9% for exports to overall GDP in PPP for 2020 compares to 3.7% for 2019. Those percentages suggest a relatively increasing reliance on products sold on international markets for Uzbekistan’s total economic performance, albeit based on a short timeframe.
Another key indicator of a country’s economic performance is its unemployment rate. Uzbekistan’s unemployment rate was 10.21% at March 2020, up from 9% one year earlier according to Trading Economics.
Uzbekistan’s capital city is Tashkent, translated as “City of Stones” from Uzbek.
See also Gold Exports by Country, Grapes Exports by Country and Capital Facts for Tashkent, Uzbekistan
Central Intelligence Agency, The World Factbook Central Asia: Uzbekistan. Accessed on September 25, 2021
Forbes 2020 Global 2000 rankings, The World’s Biggest Public Companies. Accessed on September 25, 2021
International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on September 25, 2021
International Trade Centre, Trade Map. Accessed on September 25, 2021
Investopedia, Net Exports Definition. Accessed on September 25, 2021
Wikipedia, Gross domestic product. Accessed on September 25, 2021
Wikipedia, List of Companies of Uzbekistan. Accessed on September 25, 2021
Wikipedia, Purchasing power parity. Accessed on September 25, 2021