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Trade & Investment and Competitiveness
Reduction of Constraints to Investment, Production and Trade

Since August 2000, the Pragma Corporation has played an active role in reducing regulatory and bureaucratic constraints to investment, production, and trade in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan.

The core activity of Pragma’s USAID-funded Trade Facilitation and Investment (TFI) Project was the Reduction of Investment Constraints (RIC). The activity is now continued through USAID Business Environment Improvement Project implemented by Pragma. Within the RIC component, the Projects work directly with national governments, select oblast and city administrations, and private sector business groups and associations to identify, analyze, and reduce regulatory and bureaucratic constraints to trade, investment, and business development. Together with these partners, the Projects’ consultants help draft, adopt, and implement transparent, liberalized laws, regulations, and procedures that create a more favorable environment for businesses to compete, innovate, and grow. Results include the elimination of outdated laws and regulations, reduction of bureaucratic processes and procedural timeframes and costs, elimination of undue agency discretion, and reduction in the number
of documents required to establish or operate a business.

The project also provide technical assistance to its partners to adopt and apply its methodology for identifying and reducing administrative
barriers. Some of the results of the TFI’s RIC Component include:

  • Reductions in business licenses and permits and streamlining associated processes

  • Expediting the import and export of goods

  • Reducing the requirements connected to acquiring and developing real estate

  • Simplifying the processes for registering and closing a business

TFI’s RIC Component was active in the following countries:

  • Kazakhstan (21 cities),

  • Kyrgyzstan (3 cities),

  • Uzbekistan (3 cities), and

  • Tajikistan (2 cities).

The new USAID-funded Business Environment Improvement Project that Pragma has begun implementing in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan includes activities in the area of reduction of local-level business constraints and will carry on the legacy of the TFI project.

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