President of Uzbekistan proposes to include chess in the school curriculum

Shavkat Mirziyoyev suggested including chess in the school curriculum. Ancient game is very popular in the republic and a real chess boom occurred in 2004, when Uzbek grandmaster Rustam Kasimdzhanov sensationally won FIDE World Champion title.

Uzbekistan Chess Federation (UCF) was established in 1996, gathering more than 1,700 people. According to the UCF, there are 11 international male grand masters and three in the female category.

In the opinion of FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, "chess allows us to develop not only logic but creativity and imagination, because both hemispheres of the brain work during the game. When we introduce chess lessons in schools, the task is not to grow champions, but to make sure that children learn better in other subjects." Ilyumzhinov said that academic performance rose by 40% after introduction of chess lessons in Kalmykia schools.