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INFORMATION DIGEST No. 116

June 14, 2017

POLITICS
In Tashkent on June 12, the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev held a videoconference dedicated to discussion of tasks on preliminary analysis of expected results of socio-economic development of our country

On June 12, a videoconference dedicated to discussion of tasks on preliminary analysis of expected results of socio-economic development of our country in the first half of this year, prompt elimination of existing shortcomings and achievement of forecast indicators and target parameters in all spheres and sectors, was held in Tashkent.

The event was attended by the Prime Minister of the Republic of Uzbekistan and his deputies, state advisers to the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan, heads of ministries and departments, economic associations. Chairmen of Jokargy Kenes and the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Karakalpakstan, khokims of regions, cities and districts, heads of territorial subdivisions of ministries and departments, enterprises at places, representatives of public and entrepreneurs took part at the meeting through videoconference.

The President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev led the meeting.

At the meeting, positive results achieved in the past period of this year in implementation of strategic tasks on raising our country to a new level of development were noted, shortcomings and problems in the process of reforms, ways for their solution, and issues of strengthening executive discipline were comprehensively analyzed. It was noted that large-scale activities has been carried out recently on solving problems existing in the system of state governing bodies, improving and increasing the efficiency of their activities. Formation or reorganization of 22 ministries, state committees, companies, associations and other structures, introduction of changes into structures, specification of the main tasks and functions of dozens of departments that are included in the Cabinet of Ministers’ complexes were noted as important practical measures in this direction.

At the same time, it was noted that results expected from these reforms are achieved not in all spheres, some newly formed ministries and departments have not yet established their effective activities, which negatively affects implementation of programs identified for 2017. In particular, several months have passed since the adoption of decrees on organization of “Uzagroexportbank” and “Poytahtbank”, but founders of these banks have not yet ensured the beginning of their activities. The reasons of this situation were deeply analyzed, specific assignments were given for their elimination.

At the meeting, special attention was paid to inadmissibility of work on the basis of old stereotypes, superficial and severed from reality approaches, especially in the sphere of economic management. It was noted that current time requires a critical assessment of the situation in all spheres, introduction of new methods and effective systems for their development, modern management mechanisms, as well as high responsibility and initiative.

The head of our state analyzed activities of the government over the past period and noted that working with regions, in-depth and comprehensive study and consistent solution of each problem while visiting places, effectiveness will become important criteria in assessing activities of heads of complexes of the Cabinet of Ministers, ministries and departments, local authorities.

President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, speaking about the expected results of activities carried out in the first half of the year in certain spheres and sectors of the economy noted that there are serious shortcomings in the activity of the heads of a number of complexes, ministries and industries. For example, gas production delays are allowed at joint ventures of the National Holding Company “Uzbekneftegaz”. Growth in volumes of production at some enterprises of light, food, leather and shoe industry is not provided at proper level.

At the meeting, it was noted that the practice of researching additional reserves and projects in each region with visiting places, development of promising projects on this basis, gives positive results. So far, new opportunities have been identified for the development and implementation of 1 260 projects for a total amount of more than 23 trillion sums. At the same time, delays and shortcomings are allowed even in implementation of these important projects aimed at development of the regions, saturation of domestic market, expanding export, most importantly, ensuring employment of the population, raising the level and quality of their lives.

The President of our country, speaking of the role and responsibility of the state bodies in development of the regions, criticized the situation in Samarkand region, where, due to indifference and inaction of some leaders, a number of serious problems were accumulated. It was identified during the trip to the region last week. Development of the region is hampered by the lack of close interaction and constructive relation between the khokim of the region, his deputies, khokims of cities and districts, heads of regional departments.

The regional khokim does not take into account the opinion of public and leaders, puts not deeply thought out tasks and assignments before executors, does not show determination and initiative, ability to confidently assume responsibility, which does not allow to solve serious and actual tasks facing the region today. There is no direct dialogue with people, no close interaction with the mass media.

Work on construction of objects in the region, investment development lags behind, the growth of production of domestic products oriented for export is not ensured. Issues of improving cities and villages, creating an enabling environment for people have been neglected. Financial and tax departments of the region are not working enough on finding and using opportunities for expanding the tax base. The khokim of the region Kh.Okbutayev did not have enough knowledge and potential of management experience in solving these problems, uniting all residents of Samarkand region around a common goal.

President of the Republic of Uzbekistan dismissed Kh.Okbutayev, the khokim of Samarkand region from his post for such serious shortcomings and omissions.

At the meeting, it was emphasized that all reforms implemented in our country and state programs are aimed at raising the level and quality of life of the population, relief from worries and improving people’s well-being. It is necessary to take under strict control and ensure unconditional execution of each law, decree and resolution adopted on the basis of dialogue with people, comprehensive study of concerns and problems of the population at places.

– We will always pursue such a strict policy and will certainly bring it to the end, said Shavkat Mirziyoyev.

At the videoconference, reports of the heads of complexes of the Cabinet of Ministers, ministries and departments, economic associations, khokims of the regions, districts and cities were thoroughly discussed. Appropriate decisions were taken.
(Source: UzA)

On June 13, the President of Uzbekistan held a videoconference dedicated to the state of affairs on ensuring justice in the system of judicial authorities, problems and objectives for the future

On June 13, a videoconference dedicated to the state of affairs on ensuring justice in the system of judicial authorities, problems and objectives for the future was held in Tashkent. It was attended by the heads of the Oliy Majlis chambers, Prime Minister of the Republic of Uzbekistan, members of the Supreme judicial council, chairman of the Supreme court, heads of law enforcement bodies, judges of regional, district and city courts. The meeting was also attended by the chairman of the Jokargy Kenes of the Republic of Karakalpakstan, regional khokims, the city of Tashkent, cities and districts, heads of territorial law enforcement departments, veterans, members of the public through videoconference.

The President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev made his address at the meeting.

The head of our state noted that justice from time immemorial was criterion of calm and prosperous life of our people, a source of humanism. Sahibkiran Amir Temur conducted his state affairs on the basis of “Strength – in justice” principle and achieved peace and prosperity in the country. At present, the most important task for establishing a legal democratic state and civil society in our country is to ensure the rule of law and justice. In this process, the role and importance of the judicial system, which is an independent branch of the state power, is very important. We are even more aware of this truth in the process of implemented large-scale reforms aimed at raising our country to a new level of development, said President Shavkat Mirziyoyev.

It was noted that in the years of independence large-scale activities aimed at ensuring independence of judiciary authority and increasing its authority, transforming it from a punitive body into an institution that reliably protects human rights and freedoms were implemented in our country. Shortcomings and problems in the sphere were comprehensively analyzed, important practical conclusions are drawn.

In the Strategy of action on five priority development directions of the Republic of Uzbekistan in 2017-2021, priority areas of reforming the judicial and legal system are increasing citizens’ access to justice, ensuring true independence of judicial authority, strengthening guarantees of reliable protection of human rights and freedoms. In order to implement the Strategy of action, 7 articles of the Constitution of the Republic of Uzbekistan were introduced fundamental amendments related to reforming the judicial and legal sphere. A new body of judicial community – the Supreme judicial council of the Republic of Uzbekistan has been established for improving the system of selecting candidates and appointing judges, forming a highly qualified judicial corps. This is recognized as confirmation of consistent continuation of reforms in this direction.

At the meeting, it was noted that important practical steps in development of the judicial system became the reformation in accordance with requirements of time of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Uzbekistan as a single supreme body of the judicial authority in the sphere of civil, criminal, administrative and economic legal proceedings, abolishing of non-corresponding entity of sending justice of direction practice by courts of criminal cases for additional investigation.

The need of not confining the achieved results, but applying a critical approach to the development of the sphere in a new way, effectively organizing activities of the judicial bodies and judges on the basis of concrete proposals and sound initiatives that forward effective mechanisms and ways of solving important and actual tasks, which life itself confronts us, was emphasized.

The fact that a significant part of appeals from citizens to the People’s receptions and the Virtual reception of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan concerns exactly activities of courts and judges, testifies existence of many problems in this direction, said the head of our state.

The state of compliance with principles of justice in the judicial system was analyzed in detail.

Our main goal is to strengthen people’s trust in the judicial system by protecting the rights and freedoms of citizens, turning the court into a true “Abode of justice”, said Shavkat Mirziyoyev.

Today, the most important task is formation of a judicial corps that has a strong will, high professional and moral qualities, capable of taking comprehensively considered fair decisions. Lawyers who do not know their sphere perfectly, who do not have professional skills and life experience, as well as high moral qualities, should never be appointed to the position of a judge.

It was noted that justice and spirituality are interrelated concepts. There can be no justice where there is no spirituality. Therefore, it is necessary to pay special attention to these issues in training of judges, legal personnel and appointment to the position of a judge.

At the meeting, the situation when there are cases of illegal actions, corruption, indifference to people’s concerns, decision-making that violate principles of justice because of lack of spiritual qualities among judges was severely criticized. Serious shortcomings and problems in the sphere have arisen due to the fact that former leaders of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Uzbekistan did not pay attention to these extremely important issues. New leaders of the Supreme Court have specific tasks for prompt elimination of such shortcomings and problems, taking necessary measures for effective organization of activities of judicial bodies and judges in accordance with requirements of the law and principles of justice.

It was emphasized that it is necessary to prevent bureaucratic arbitrariness in courts, to give proper assessment to judicial officers who allow untimely consideration of cases and red tape. Participants of the meeting fully supported the forwarded proposal on introduction of the procedure of conduction by judges of an open dialogue with population at places at least once a month.

It was emphasized that it is time to establish practice of presenting report by each judge on his/her activities in local Kengashes of people’s deputies. First of all, people themselves will evaluate activities of judges, said the head of our state.

Issue of further improving the system of training and professional development of judges was also thoroughly considered. Participants of the meeting supported the proposal forwarded by the President of our country on organization of a specialized educational institution – the Academy of justice in order to increase the effectiveness of activities carried out in this direction.

At the meeting, another important proposal was forwarded and supported by its participants – organization of broadcasts on television and publication of articles in the press on a regular basis under headings such as “Judicial club” and “Under protection of a court”, telling about life of judges who earned respect of people, as well as promoting positive practice in the sphere of justice.

Issues of expanding the scales of practice on conducting exit court meetings in makhallas, enterprises and organizations aimed at prevention of violations, widespread introduction of information and communication technologies in activities of courts, including electronic stenography and videoconferencing, formation of an inter-agency electronic information exchange system on ensuring unconditional execution of court decisions, constant study of the process of administration of justice, timely identification of problems and their solutions. Specific recommendations and instructions were given on each discussed issue.

President of our country Shavkat Mirziyoyev emphasized that critical analysis, strict discipline and personal responsibility should become a permanent and invariable rule for all employees of the state governing bodies and judges.

Employees of judicial bodies, heads of the state governing bodies, representatives of public expressed their gratitude to the head of our state for the great attention paid to the development of the judicial and legal system in our country and noted that cohesive and effective work towards implementation of fully justified actual tasks and objectives is responsible task of the entire judicial community of Uzbekistan, each employee of the judicial and legal system.
(Source: UzA)

OFFICIALLY
Uzbekistan: Main tasks and directions of activity of Ministry of health determined

In order to create a unified system of health management that meet the modern requirements of organizational structure and further improve the quality of medical care provided to the population of the Republic, the head of state adopted a Resolution "On measures on further improvement of activity of bodies of health care".

The document defines the main tasks and directions of activity of the Ministry of health of the Republic of Uzbekistan and its territorial bodies, including:

- implementation of a unified state policy in the field of health protection, aimed at increasing the role and responsibility of heads of bodies and organizations of the Ministry to ensure full and timely provision of public healthcare services;

- priority of ensuring public health, motivating the population to lead a healthy lifestyle, improving the culture and health literacy of the population, primarily in fostering a sense of responsibility for their own health and the health of others;

- creation of favorable conditions for the birth and upbringing of healthy generation, to improve the nation's gene pool, increasing the family medical culture, quality and duration of life, the development of the main directions of state policy in the field of health protection and sanitary-epidemiological welfare of population;

- expansion of medical care services to rural areas;

- improving the accessibility and responsiveness provided to the population of primary, emergency, acute and specialized medical care;

- implementation of measures on state regulation of drug circulation, the implementation of standardization and certification of medicines, medical devices and medical equipment, and equipment permitted for use on the territory of the Republic of Uzbekistan;

- improvement of targeted social protection of lonely elderly, pensioners, the disabled, improving the level and quality of health and social care through the organization of their treatment;

- development of a strategy and forecasting of development of medical science through a combination of domestic experience and global best achievements, improving the efficiency of scientific medical research, introduction of achievements of science, engineering and advanced experience into medical practice, development of the system of higher and secondary medical education;

- introduction of modern and proven in international practice methods of managing the health system, providing a single organizational-methodical management and control of quality of medical services in the health system.
(Source: UzReport.uz)

Turobjon Juraev becomes acting governor of Samarkand region

Turobjon Juraev was appointed as an acting khokim (governor) of Samarkand region.

As earlier reported, Himmat Okbutaev was released from the post of governor of Samarkand region for shortages and omissions in his activities.

Prior to this appointment, Turobjon Juraev worked as the hokim of Bekabad district of Tashkent region.
(Source: UzDaily.com)

ECONOMY
President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev has approved a Program on the Automobile Industry Development for 2021

The document estimates that in five years the volume of car production in Uzbekistan will increase by three times, the share of imports against the production will decrease by 12.5%, and the number of employees at the industry enterprises will grow by 1.2 times. This is expected to be achieved through the implementation of dozens of new investment projects for a total amount of over $800 million.

Changes in the organizational and legal structure of the joint-stock company Uzavtosanoat rank among the major innovations. It will turn into a joint-stock company with all that it entails.

The key objectives for the near future include the increase in the production of domestically and internationally marketable products through the implementation of projects involving foreign investors that are aimed at development of new modern types and brands of cars, reduction of the share of imports and decrease in production costs through the enhancement of the localization of production of component parts.

A very important point that implies future changes in the situation on the foreign exchange market is worth of special mention. The head of state assigned to ensure sustainable development of the industry in the conditions of tough competition and liberalization of monetary policy.

There is another interesting point: since June 1, 2017 the President has reduced the excise tax rate for GM Uzbekistan cars from 29% to 27%. In this case, the effect of this paragraph does not apply to cars sold under contracts concluded prior to June 1, 2017, with a payment of at least 85% of the car value.

As an exception, companies are also allowed exporting manufactured buses and trucks, mounted and trailed equipment, as well as component parts for them by 2021 without prepayment or opening a letter of credit.

However, there is a requirement for a guarantee of the buyer's bank, and the period of receipt of the proceeds or the return import must be fixed at the level of 180 days from the date of actual export of the specified product to the address of official distributors or other buyers. The peferential lending for investment projects also matters.

From now and on, Asaka Bank will provide loans to Uzavtosanoat to finance investment projects and replenish the working capital in national currency at an interest rate not exceeding the refinancing rate of the Central Bank, as well as loans in foreign currency with a margin of no more than 2%.
(Source: «Uzbekistan Today» newspaper)

REFORMS
Fund for Land Relations and State Cadastre Development is being established in Uzbekistan

The new structure will channel funds to the development and strengthening of the logistical capacity of the system of land resources, geodesy, cartography and state cadastre bodies, as well as to maintenance of additional staffing units of the State Committee on Land Resources, Geodesy, Cartography and State Cadaster. In addition, the funds will also finance the stimulation, retraining and advanced training of the industry staff.

100% of LRSCDF funds will be built from fines for the uneconomical use of land or its damage, unauthorized violation of in-farm land management design, violation of the rules of the state land cadastre management, destruction or damage to boundary and restrictive signs. 10% of the amount of fines levied for the untimely registration of ownership rights for residential buildings will also be channeled to the Fund.

100% of allocations received due to 25 percent increase in the cost of state services for technical inventory and registration of cadastral documentation is another source of funding for the new structure.
(Source: «Uzbekistan Today» newspaper)

INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION
Foreign Minister of Uzbekistan participates in Central Asia-UN Forum

High-Level Dialogue "Central Asia-UN" passed on June 13, in Ashgabat, under the chairmanship of UN Secretary General António Guterres. A delegation of the Republic of Uzbekistan headed by Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdulaziz Kamilov took part in its work.

The UN Secretary General and the heads of delegations of the MFA of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan discussed the implementation of Joint Action Plan (JAP) in Central Asia, which is the first document of its kind in implementation of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy at the regional level, and determined the future priorities of the JAP.

The Final Declaration was adopted following the meeting.
(Source: UzReport.uz)

Uzbek and Turkmen FMs hold meeting in Ashgabat

On 13 June 2017, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Uzbekistan Abdulaziz Kamilov held talks with Deputy Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan Rashid Meredov in Ashgabat.

The Uzbek Foreign Minister visited Ashgabat to participate in the High-Level Dialogue “Central Asia-UN”, which was attended by the UN Secretary General António Guterres.

Foreign Ministers of Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan discussed practical aspects of implementation of the agreements, reached during the Uzbek-Turkmen high-level talks in March and May 2017.

According to the press service of the Uzbek Foreign Ministry, the parties also discussed the prospects for cooperation between Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan within the framework of international organizations and other issues of mutual interest.
(Source: UzDaily.com)

A project on the development of the Khojasayat section of the Dengizkul, Khodjadavlat and Sharkiy Alat gas condensate fields has been launched in Uzbekistan

Uzbekneftegaz NHC and the Chinese National Oil and Gas Company (CNPC) have launched gas extraction at the three largest gas condensate fields in the Bukhara region.

The new gas condensate fields of Khodjasayat, Khodjadavlat and Sharkiy Alat in the Bukhara region were opened as part of the implementation of the ‘Agreement on Geological Exploration in Investment Blocks of the Republic of Uzbekistan’, which was signed between Uzbekneftegaz and the Chinese National Oil and Gas Company in June 2006.

Aiming to arrange and further put the fields into commercial operation, the parties created a joint venture New Silk Road Oil&Gas with all the benefits for further development of the project.

The rapid start of the project was empowered by the talks between President Shavkat Mirziyoyev and the CNPC Board Chairman Wang Yilin during the recent state visit of the President of Uzbekistan to the People's Republic of China. The project entered into an active phase after the signing of the loan agreement with the Bank of China under the guarantee of CNPC.

The project’s total cost will make up $377.5 million, more than 150 new jobs will be created. Its implementation will ensure the annual production of over one billion cubic meters of natural gas. It is planned to export the fuel, and produce about 6,500 tons of gas condensate from it for the domestic market.
(Source: «Uzbekistan Today» newspaper)

Reference to the source is a must in reproducing materials.