DFIs combine to modernise Uzbekistan's horrendous cotton industryThe EBRD and the IFC have provided $130 million of financing for a project aime...DFIs combine to modernise Uzbekistan's horrendous cotton industry
The EBRD and the IFC have provided $130 million of financing for a project aimed at upgrading the equipment, practices and labour rights of an industry infamous for its historical use of modern slavery.
The EBRD and IFC have provided a $130 million financing package to Indorama Agro, aimed at supporting the modernisation of Uzbekistan’s cotton industry. The funding will back the efficiency-enhancing plans of Indorama, an established cotton industry player engaged in rotational crop farming, a systematic approach to selecting locations and cycles of crop planting. It will also serve to establish new standards for workers’ rights in the notorious industry, which for over 70 years has relied on the widespread use of modern slavery at harvest time.
“The cotton industry in this country has such a horrendous legacy, which stretched over decades and used all sorts of terrible practices such as child labour,” says Anton Usov, the EBRD’s chief spokesman for Central Asia, Russia, Belarus, Mongolia. “This project represents a chance to address that legacy, which is great news for both the country and its economy.”