Tashkent, Uzbekistan, October 7, 2021—IFC signed an agreement with the government of Uzbekistan to harness private capital and expertise to build and maintain up to 15 new schools, which will help meet growing demand for quality infrastructure and subsequently lead to improved education outcomes for thousands of children.
Due to young and growing population, there is a pressing need for new schools in Uzbekistan. Many existing schools operate in shifts, have overcrowded classrooms, and many children have to travel long distances to reach their school. Furthermore, the majority of schools require rehabilitation and new equipment.
IFC will support the government of Uzbekistan on structuring and tendering a pilot public-private partnership (PPP) project, in which a qualified private operator will be selected through a competitive tender process to finance, design, construct, and maintain up to 15 new modern greenfield energy-efficient schools in select regions of Uzbekistan.
Odilbek Isakov, the Deputy Minister of Finance said: "The government is committed to an ambitious reform agenda to increase access to modern schools in Uzbekistan using private sector investment and expertise to design state-of-the-art schools. If successful, the model will be applied to roll out the wider program for more schools and nurseries. We look forward to working with IFC given their expertise in structuring social infrastructure PPPs globally to help us meet our goals."
The project is expected to provide over 10,000 new school seats, which will add much needed school capacity and reduce the burden on existing schools.
"Developing human capital is important to economic development of the country and schools play a critical role in this. The infrastructure and learning environment of schools have a direct impact in motivating teachers and students, and on the quality of education," said Muneer Ferozie, IFC's Regional Manager and Head for PPP Transaction Advisory. "Improved education outcomes, including having more students in higher education, will help support the government's goals to increase the quality of its workforce by developing human capital and fostering growth."
IFC, in partnership with the governments of Austria, Germany and Switzerland, as well as the Global Infrastructure Fund, is already advising the government of Uzbekistan on several first-ever PPPs in the energy and healthcare sectors. Using its global experience in schools PPPs, IFC is committed to supporting the Government in implementing the schools PPP program to upgrade schools' infrastructure and attract private investments in the sector.
IFC—a member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. We work in more than 100 countries, using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in developing countries. In fiscal year 2021, IFC committed a record $31.5 billion to private companies and financial institutions in developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity as economies grapple with the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.