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    UZBEKISTAN TO SELL STATE OWNED ASSETS IN NEARLY 1,400 COMPANIES

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    TASHKENT, April 9 (RIA Novosti) - By the end of 2004, the number of companies in Uzbekistan that the state owns more that 25% of will be reduced to 600. Azat Irmanov, the head of Uzbekistan's State Property Committee Department for Coordinating the Activity of State Agents and Trust Managers, told journalists that the state plans to sell its assets in nearly 1,400 companies to private owners.

    According to him, the state will retain its shares in companies that are strategically important for the country's economy. A representative of the state, the state agent (trust manager), appointed by the State Property Committee and confirmed by the country's government, will control the state's block of shares in such companies.

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