Uzbek president issues digital strategy decree, including 2022 universal broadband target

12 Oct 2020

Uzbekistan’s President Shavkat Mirziyoyev has issued a decree ‘On approval of the Strategy Digital Uzbekistan 2030 and measures for its effective implementation’. The national digital strategy includes a goal to connect every settlement to the internet at speeds of at least 10Mbps by the end of 2022, with an intermediate target to connect ‘all popular tourist destinations’ with high speed internet by end-2021. Local website UzReport lists some other digitisation initiatives in accordance with the decree: e.g. 2021 will see the introduction of a system of compensation for up to 50% of citizens’ expenses for obtaining international IT certificates in system administration, information security and other digital fields, while a new ID card system will incorporate a personal account to establish electronic relationships with government agencies and organisations. A publicly available electronic platform for domestic software products and IT services is also being created, and a September 2021 target was set to launch digital technology training centres in each district and city for the general population, especially youth and women.

The website of the Ministry of Information Technologies & Communications (MITC) gives details of other aspects of the Digital Uzbekistan 2030 strategy, including further targets for 2022 involving the expansion of high speed mobile network coverage ‘from 78% to 95%’ and the deployment of 20,000km of new fibre-optic lines in 2020-22, alongside other priorities for the development of digital infrastructure, e-government, digital economy, the national market for digital technologies, and IT education (with computer coding training earmarked for 500,000 young people under the ‘One Million Programmers’ project). Aiming to eliminate the digital divide in all regions of the country, three-year digital transformation programmes are being developed for each region, with 13 ‘model’ districts/cities identified for pilot schemes in 2020.