Shavkat Miromonovich Mirziyoyev is an Uzbek politician who has served as President of Uzbekistan and Supreme Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Uzbekistan since 2016. Previously he was the Prime Minister of Uzbekistan from 2003 to 2016.
Following the death of President Islam Karimov, he was appointed by the Supreme Assembly as interim President of Uzbekistan on 8 September 2016. He was subsequently elected as President in the December 2016 presidential election, winning 88.6% of the vote, and was sworn in on 14 December 2016.
Life and career
In 1981, Mirziyoyev graduated from the Tashkent Institute of Irrigation and Melioration. He holds a Candidate (Ph.D) degree in Technological Sciences.
He served as governor (Hakim) of Jizzakh Region from 1996 to September 2001, then as governor of Samarqand Region from September 2001 until his appointment as Prime Minister in 2003. He was nominated as Prime Minister by President Islam Karimov on 12 December 2003, and approved by the Uzbek parliament. He replaced Prime Minister O‘tkir Sultonov. His deputy was Ergash Shoismatov.
Mirziyoyev and Han Myeong-sook, the Prime Minister of South Korea, met in Tashkent on 25 September 2006. They signed several agreements, including one deal in which Uzbekistan will send 300 tons of Uzbek uranium ore to South Korea every year from 2010 to 2014. The deal bypasses U.S. companies that acted previously as middlemen for South Korean imports of Uzbek uranium ore. Han also met with President Islam Karimov and parliament speaker Erkin Xalilov. Han and Mirziyoyev boosted cooperation in the energy, agriculture, construction, architecture, and information technology sectors. Trade between South Korea and Uzbekistan increased by nearly 40% between 2005 and 2006, to $565 million.
According to a 2017 report by Human Rights Watch on forced and child labour in the cotton sector of Uzbekistan, during his time as prime minister from 2003 to 2016 Mirziyoyev "oversaw the cotton production system, and as the previous governor of Jizzakh and Samarkand, he was in charge of two cotton-producing regions.
Mirziyoyev's foreign policy is much more open than the policy of his predecessor. Uzbekistan was practically under international isolation after the Andijan massacre in 2005 and Karimov rarely travelled. Mirziyoyev promised to conduct an active foreign policy at the beginning of his tenure. During the first 10 months, Mirziyoyev visited Kazakhstan four times, Turkmenistan three times, Russia two times, as well as China, Saudi Arabia, United States, Turkey and Kyrgyzstan. At the different occasions, he met the Presidents of Iran, Azerbaijan, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Bulgaria, Belarus and the King of Spain. During the CIS Summit in Tashkent in November 2017, he met 8 Prime Ministers of foreign countries. One of his most significant foreign policy achievements is the gradual improvement of relations with Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. On 5 September, just 3 days after the anniversary of the death of his predecessor, he made a historic visit to Kyrgyzstan. That was the first state visit of an Uzbek President to this neighboring country since 2000.On 19 September, he addressed the UN General Assembly for the first time. In 2018, a large number of foreign leaders visited and or are expected in Uzbekistan, including Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, as well as Belarussian leader Alexander Lukashenko whose visit took place in September and was his first state visit to the country in 24 years.In March 2018, he made a visit to Tajikistan, which made him the first Uzbek president to conduct a state visit Dushanbe since 2000.
Mirziyoyev has also taken an important role in Afghanistan by offering to host peace talks between the government and the Taliban since March 2018. During the week of 6-10 August 2018 a Taliban delegation visited Tashkent, at the request of Mirziyoyev, to discuss issues including transport, power and peace in Afghanistan.Shavkat Mirziyoyev attended the Vibrant Gujarat international investment summit as a key guest, being the first Central Asian leader to participate as a partner in the summit. In early 2019, it was announced that Mirziyoyev plans to visit 36 countries in official visits planned for throughout the year.
In March 2019, Mirziyoyev held a telephone conversation with Nursultan Nazarbayev, who had resigned from office that day. In it, he expressed regret to the ex-president, saying that he was a "great politician".
During a visit to Abu Dhabi in March 2019, Mirziyoyev came away from his talks with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed over 10 billion dollars in infrastructure, alternative energy and agriculture deals, as well as deals in other spheres.
His father, Miromon Mirziyoyev, worked as a physician for most of his life until death. He worked as the head physician of the tuberculosis dispensary in Zaamin. He also has two sisters, a half-brother, and sister. Mirziyoyev is married to Ziroatkhon Hoshimova and has two daughters, a son and five grandchildren. His eldest son-in-law, Oybek Tursunov, is the current head of the Mirziyoyev’s presidential administration, while his younger son-in-law, Otabek Shahanov is the head of the presidential security services.
Since coming to power, Mirziyoyev has used the Qibray District to a new residence for himself, which could potenially include a presidential highway, and an interior that is decorated with Argentinian marble slabs and Swarovski crystals.