The Laws on Foreign Investments and "On Guarantees and Measures for the Protection of Rights of Foreign Investors" adopted on 30 April 1998, the "Foreign Investment Laws", provide the legal framework for foreign investment in Uzbekistan.
The laws define the types of entities in which foreigners can invest, the conditions governing repatriation of profits and earnings, and the general rights and guarantees of foreign investors.
Foreigners can invest in a business venture in Uzbekistan in a number of ways, including by:
- acquiring share in an existing company by participating in auctions or tenders organised under the privatisation programme;
- acquiring share in an existing company by direct negotiation with the owners of the shares or by purchasing shares on the stock market;
- forming a joint venture company with an Uzbek enterprise or individual;
- establishing a new, wholly owned company, or any other form that does not contradict Uzbek legislation.
Under the Foreign Investment Laws, investments cannot be nationalised or confiscated without the payment of compensation. The Foreign Investment Laws also provide for protection against adverse changes in the law for a 10-year period following registration.
Under the Foreign Investment Laws, foreign investors are entitled to repatriate profits in convertible currency after the payment of applicable taxes and other fees. A new currency policy provides conversion in any sum and at any time.
Foreign investors may choose from a number of different forms of organisation to conduct business and business-related activities in Uzbekistan, including: limited liability societies, joint stock societies, partnerships, subsidiaries, representative offices and branches of foreign enterprises.