Agrarian Reform In Uzbekistan And Other Central Asian Countries
The five Central Asian countries that gained their independence at the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991 have followed different paths of transition to a market economy in the agricultural sector. Kyrgyzstan has been the most aggressive in restructuring agricultural enterprises, privatizing land, and promoting individual farming. Kazakstan and Turkmenistan have had similar legal and policy reforms, but implementation has lagged. Tajikistan's efforts at reform have been hampered by civil strife and continued weakness of government. Uzbekistan, in contrast to the others, has attempted to control its progress towards market-oriented agriculture very closely, with the result that the agrarian sector looks on the surface very similar today to what it looked like in 1991. After a brief discussion of the similarities and differences among the Central Asian countries, this essay explores the results of Uzbekistan's choice to proceed "step by step," as the government says, by examining the country's characteristics of agrarian structure, agricultural production, and policy concerns.
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