Growth of Uzbekistan's industrial production averaged 3.2% in the 1980s, although on a per capita basis, the republic's industrial output remained less than half that of the USSR average by the end of the decade. Most industry is based on the processing of local agricultural products. Soft goods (mainly cotton, wool, and silk fiber) and processed foods (including cottonseed oil, meat, dried fruit, wines, and tobacco) accounted for about 39% and 13% of industrial production respectively in 1990; their manufacture was concentrated in Tashkent and the Fergana Valley.
Uzbeklegprom, the state association for the production of light industry goods, produces about 90% of Uzbekistan's textiles. Production figures fell from 700 million sq m in 1993 to 650 million sq m in 1995, when total textile production was valued at $510 million. In the late 1990s, Uzbeklegprom sought to boost capacity with the assistance of several joint venture partners. Investment projects such as the $194 million investment Korean Kabul Textiles and those by Turkish firms "Astop" and "Tekfen" have begun to modernize cotton processing, although most textiles mills continue to use outdated machinery with technology from the 1970. The investment cost of updating the entire industry was estimated at between $500 million and $1 billion.
Food processing is Uzbekistan's second-largest industry, based on the country abundant production of fruits and vegetables. The sector is also in need of investment to modernize its processing and packaging equipment.
Uzbekistan's machinery industry is the primary producer of machines and heavy equipment in Central Asia. Uzavtosanoat is the cornerstone of the country's automotive industry, and has developed joint ventures with Daimler-Benz (Germany) and Daewoo (ROK). The UzDaewoo-Avto plant in Andizhan began production in 1996 and produces 200,000 units annually. Two kinds of cars, the Nexia and the Tico, and a microbus called the Damas are the main models produced.
The aerospace industry centers around the Chkalov Tashkent Aircraft Production Co., a government-controlled enterprise that is one of the largest and most significant aircraft assembly plants in Central Asia. Equipment used on the Salyut and Mir space stations were some of the products of the program, which also includes explorations of the Moon, Mars and Venus. Of more practical use have been developments in satellite imaging and communications.
Metal processing industries are clustered in the Olmaliq-Oharangan (Almalyk-Akhangaran) complex, southeast of Tashkent. Metal alloys, wire, rods and sheet and gas-based nitrogen are manufactured in Chirchiq, close to the Kazakhstan border in the northeast. Chemical fertilizers used mainly in cotton production are also produced in the Chirchiq.
Uzbekistan has three oil refineries, at Fergana, Alty-Arik, and Bukhara. The 50,000-barrels-per-day-capacity facility at Bukhara was built after the breakup of the Soviet Union at a cost in excess of $400 million, and is expected to be expanded to a capacity of 100,000 barrels per day, with the ability to handle both crude oil and gas condensate. In 2001, however, the refineries were operating well below capacity because of the decline in the Uzbekistan's oil production.