The international coalition Cotton Campaign declared the cancellation of the global boycott of Uzbek cotton. An official statement about this was made on March 10 in Tashkent at a joint briefing at the Ministry of Employment and Labor Relations of the Republic of Uzbekistan.
“We commend President Shavkat Mirziyoyev’s leadership in initiating and implementing the historic reforms needed to end state-imposed forced labor and reform Uzbekistan’s cotton sector,” said Bennett Freeman, co-founder of the Cotton Campaign.
Earlier, a group of 331 international brands and retailers announced a boycott of cotton products from Uzbekistan due to the systematic use of child and forced labor in the collection of raw cotton. Since 2017, the government of Uzbekistan has entered into dialogue with the coalition to end the cotton boycott.
Freeman noted that the reforms carried out to ensure rights and freedoms and the significant improvements achieved by Uzbekistan in recent years were the basis for lifting the boycott. “Now this will allow the leading enterprises of the world textile industry to enter the Uzbek market, will help create millions of new jobs in the country, introduce international standards, increase exports and further develop international cooperation,” Freeman explained.