Telegram’s founder and CEO Pavel Durov shared his impressions of his visit to Uzbekistan, which lasted several days. He mentioned that he “thoroughly enjoyed” his time in the country and posted photos from the trip.

“Uzbekistan loves Telegram: over 70% of the country’s 37 million people is on Telegram and their entire economy is run on our platform (every business in the country has a Telegram bot or channel). We are proud of this popularity and we love Uzbekistan back,” Pavel Durov noted.

He shared his delight by the modern infrastructure of quickly developing Tashkent, the mountainous landscapes of Eastern Uzbekistan, and the rich history of Bukhara and Samarkand.


“I've met lots of young and talented people with good hearts. I am grateful for the warm welcome and hope to stay more in the sunny Tashkent later this year,” he wrote.

Otabek Umarov, the son-in-law of the president of Uzbekistan and head of the Central Asian Confederation of MMA (mixed martial arts), commented on his recent meeting with Pavel Durov.

“The Telegram team, led by the project’s founder Pavel Durov and his brother Nikolay, visited Uzbekistan. In our country, this service is treated with special warmth because Telegram is more than the number one messenger for us. With its help, we not only stay in touch with our loved ones but also learn news, run business, find necessary goods and services. In one way or another, Telegram benefits almost every mobile Internet user,” he wrote on Instagram.


“We were honored to host Pavel and his family in the hospitable land of Uzbekistan. It is immensely gratifying to see firsthand that all of them are not only professionals of the highest caliber but also wonderful people with a soul open to the world. We hope that the impressions of Tashkent, Bukhara, and Samarkand, as well as communication with Telegram users, will inspire new technological solutions in them. I am confident we will not have to wait long for this,” Otabek Umarov added.

Before Uzbekistan, Pavel Durov visited Kyrgyzstan. Following his trip, he also promised to return to this country.

Pavel Durov announced his plans to visit Central Asian countries on 10 June. “This summer I’ve decided to check out Central Asia to see what life is like there, study how people use Telegram and what their digital needs are,” he commented.

Purpose of travel

Two sources shared with that Pavel Durov discussed the opening of a Telegram bank and the legalization of the Toncoin cryptocurrency with Uzbekistan’s authorities.

In Kazakhstan, during Durov’s visit to the Astana International Financial Center (AIFC), Toncoin, which he founded, received approval. The currency can now be traded on crypto exchanges registered in AIFC.

Toncoin is a cryptocurrency based on the The Open Network (TON) blockchain platform. Originally named Telegram Open Network, the project was developed by Telegram as a blockchain platform. Toncoin is now used as a digital asset within the TON network.