On November 28, the legislative chamber of the Oliy Majlis in Uzbekistan gave initial approval in the first reading for a proposal to reduce penalties related to the illegal import of drones into the country, TuraNews.kz reports.
Presently, the Criminal Code imposes criminal liability for the illegal import, transfer, purchase, storage, or use of drones, with a maximum penalty of up to three years in prison. In cases with aggravating circumstances, the punishment can extend up to 10 years.
The proposed bill seeks to introduce administrative liability for the first offense related to the violation of rules governing the import and handling of drones. Additionally, there are plans to ease sanctions outlined in the Criminal Code for repeated violations.
Since 2015, the import of drones into Uzbekistan has been prohibited, except in specific cases. The Customs Committee has frequently reported instances of passengers being apprehended while attempting to bring drones into the country.
Currently, legal entities can import and utilize drones for their specific purposes by obtaining a special permit. This right is predominantly exercised in the agricultural sector, with members of the licorice producers association being among those granted permission.
Starting from November 2022, the Ministry of Tourism and the Charvak Directorate have also been granted the authority to import drones. Prior to this expansion, only the Geoinnovation Center at the Cadastral Agency and UzGASHKLITI possessed this privilege.