Uzbekistan has been experiencing rapid changes in many areas and many reforms have been initiated by the Uzbek President. U.S. Embassy in Tashkent is now able to implement programs that have not been possible for more than a decade, and cooperation from the government and non-governmental organizations has been steadily improving. This includes cooperation with the country’s state-run broadcast company, MTRK.
Agriculture remains a major component of Uzbekistan’s economy. Supporting private sector actors along the high-value agricultural value chain helps to assist some of the poorest and most vulnerable, but also has significant multiplier effects. High value agricultural production reduces the proportion of land used for cotton production, which is resource-intensive and requires a large amount of water and labor. At the same time, this sector promotes high-quality jobs for Uzbek citizens domestically, increasing income levels, and creating markets for U.S. firms.
Embassy Tashkent has received requests from the leading state media agency and independent weekly for cooperation in producing positive content about United States agriculture. This media Co-op will allow local journalists to report on the agriculture sector in the United States, thus providing a positive and factual view of U.S. and strengthening a priority relationship.
The primary goal is that the selected state Uzbekistan radio, regional TV outlet and weekly newspaper acquire valuable and credible information about U.S. agricultural infrastructure and share it with their audiences in Uzbekistan. The information obtained through various interviews with farmers, experts and other professionals would be used to produce a series of TV and radio programs and print media articles related to the topic, which is also one of the Uzbek government’s top priorities. The outlets would be most interested in practices that could be applied in Uzbekistan to improve its agriculture sector, and want to learn more about the American experience of cotton growing and horticulture.