A delegation of VIPs travelled 2,800 miles from Uzbekistan to Sunderland as part of international partnership which aims to improve the lives of millions of people.

The University of Sunderland is currently involved as a key partner in the development of the new International Pharmaceutical Technical University in Uzbekistan.

The pharmaceutical experts visited Sunderland to sign a Collaborative Partner Agreement which aims to be key in growing and developing Uzbekistan’s pharmaceutical industry.

Uzbekistan’s President Shavkat Mirziyoyev asked that the new International University be created, alongside a pioneering centre to drive cutting-edge research and development, and a technology and innovation park which will be the home of a commercial technology cluster.

The country’s government has now provided 80 hectares of land on the outskirts of Tashkent, the country’s capital, for the development of the project.

Professor John MacIntyre, Pro Vice Chancellor at the University of Sunderland, said: “We are delighted to be working with representatives of the Uzbekistan Government on this exciting new development in Tashkent.

“Over the next few years, we will see Uzbek students coming to Sunderland to study with our Faculty of Health Science and Wellbeing and Faculty of Technology, and we will also see hundreds of students studying our programmes at the new university campus in Tashkent.

“Our academics will collaborate with colleagues in Uzbekistan on world-leading research projects and work with the new Research Institute and companies on the Technology Park to see research ideas translated into innovative new products and services.

“This is a very significant development for the Uzbek knowledge-based economy in this area, and we are proud to be a founding partner in this ambitious new venture.”

The University of Sunderland’s involvement in the project spans across several areas, including the training of the park’s future employees, with many students already studying in the city.

The University will be delivering a number of our Health Science and Technology programmes in partnership with the new University in Uzbekistan and will also be involved in research and development.

To assist in the development of the University, a number of staff from Sunderland’s School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Registry and International Office are supporting the project team as the new University develops

Sardor Kariev, Director of the Agency for the Development of the Pharmaceutical Industry (ADPI), said: “We are creating a new unique facility in Tashkent with the Pharmapark. We are creating an Education and Economic area and bringing them together.

“University of Sunderland is a key part of this with a strong history of working in Uzbekistan.

“The Health Science faculty has a strong reputation, and we see this as a key part of the project.

“We look forward to developing this project in the Health Science area and then beyond to IT, Engineering and Technology in future years.”

The Uzbekistan delegation was made up of Sardor Kariev; Kizlarkhon Begmatova, Head of Public Relations Department for ADPI; Nilufar Khusanova, Leading officer of Tashkent Pharma Park; and Abdumalik Dzhumanov, Principal consultant to ADPI.