April 4, 2017
THE STATE VISIT OF THE PRESIDENT OF UZBEKISTAN TO RUSSIA
On upcoming state visit of the President of Uzbekistan to Russia
President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev will pay a state visit to the Russian Federation on 4-5 April 2017 at the invitation of President Vladimir Putin.
During the meetings and negotiations with the Russian leadership, a wide range of issues on bilateral agenda, prospects of developing mutually beneficial cooperation in political, trade-economic, investment, transport-communications, scientific-technical, cultural-humanitarian and other spheres will be thoroughly considered in the context of reinforcing the strategic partnership and alliance between Uzbekistan and Russia.
The Heads of State will also exchange opinions on regional and international matters.
Following the negotiations at the highest level, a Joint declaration of the Presidents of the two countries is expected to be adopted.
Within the framework of the visit, a large package of intergovernmental, inter-ministerial agreements, commercial contracts and other documents, aimed at consistent deepening of the Uzbekistan-Russia relations, elevating them to a qualitatively new level of interaction, will be signed.
The President of Uzbekistan has provided a broad range of benefits and preferences to businesses operating in the Khorezm region and Karakalpakstan
According to the corresponding Decree, the legal entities that are registered and operate in the two regions are now exempt from mandatory sales of foreign exchange earnings from exports of industrial products they produce, with the exception of commodities.
In addition, as of April 1, 2017 - January 1, 2022, the President released the legal entities of the two regions, specializing in the production of pharmaceuticals, electrical products, and finishing building materials, from property tax, land tax, land improvement and social infrastructure development tax, as well as from mandatory contributions to public funds.
The only condition is that the share of net proceeds from sales of abovementioned products in the total volume of the company's or enterprise’s income should be at least 60% at the end of the year. Manufacturers of cable and wire products were not included in the list of beneficiaries either.
By April 1, 2017, the Ministry of Economy, in partnership with other core agencies, should develop and approve a specific list of products specified in the resolution of the head of the state as subject to tax benefits.
(Source: «Uzbekistan Today» newspaper)
Youth of Uzbekistan: The Pivotal Value and Decisive Force
In today’s world, that country has the advantage of manifesting itself who prioritizes fostering brilliantly educated and intellectually advanced generation that currently is a pivotal value and decisive force in achieving the goals of democratic development, modernization and renewal. This idea is embodied in certain practices and achievements, since, according to foreign experts, the education system in Uzbekistan ranks among the world’s most progressive.
The key objective of the national education system comes to building of the intellectual and spiritual capacity of the youth, nurturing a new well educated generation in the spirit of patriotism and high spirituality, respect for noble national and universal values, as a matter of the the future of Uzbekistan.
The issues of upbringing and education of the younger generation as the country’s pillar in the future have been in the spotlight of the public since the beginning of 2017. The whole range of resolutions focuses on the effective development of this system.
Uzbekistan has created and is constantly streamlining the conditions, which help everyone start an independent life being equipped not only with a profession, but also with a job. Much has been planned to be done in the framework of the Actions Strategy along five priority areas of the development of Uzbekistan in 2017-2021.
The question about the role of young people in the further development of the country involuntarily leads to the employment program: almost 500,000 jobs are created for college and university graduates throughout a year. Just imagine: half a million jobs for young professionals who have just graduated from educational institutions!
They are a powerful force, a powerful resource for further dynamic development of the country. It is worth mentioning, that most often, young men and girls act as the driving force in the introduction of advanced technologies, creation of new high-tech industries and economy. For example, IT can confidently be regarded as an industry of the young people today.
At the same time, college students are regarded as not just future employees of existing enterprises and organizations, but also as potential employers. A component of the training programs that are aimed at the development of entrepreneurial skills has been significantly strengthened in recent years. Parliamentarians, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry and commercial banks have been actively engaged in the process. As a result, the number of last year’s graduates who opened their business exceeded 30,000.
It is hard to imagine an area of public life today, which would operate without active involvement of young people. It is enough to mention the ongoing initiatives under the auspices of the Public Youth Movement Kamolot: cities and villages are being landscaped, rallies to support the lonely and elderly are organized, and new comfortable facilities are being built.
The entire youth policy of the state is focused on the idea of educating a comprehensively advanced generation, and its active involvement in the development processes of the country.
The Action Strategy and ongoing programs are aimed at the development of all educational institutions. The further strengthening of logistical capacity of educational institutions is in progress. Over 350 schools, 250 secondary specialized and vocational education institutions are being revamped and overhauled annually; a network of universities and extracurricular education institutions, as well as an advanced training system has been developing.
At the same time, there is an obvious emphasis on current initiatives on improvement of quality of the 12-year compulsory free education.
The revision of the activities of the institutions of secondary specialized and vocational education system ranks among the latest measures. It implies that, following the results of compulsory education, that is, nine school grades and three years at a college or lyceum, a student is not just empowered to enter the university, but also becomes a sought after specialist. This is a reason behind a resolution, under which academic lyceums now provide a specialty that does not require in-depth learning, while they focus on the main mission of preparation for entering a university.
The work of vocational colleges is built in such a way that each graduate was employed after receiving a diploma. The contractual system that guarantees a production training for students with the further employment has been streamlined. Unlike previous practice, the new contracts are also signed by a district governor, apart from a student, head of the educational institution and an employer, which creates additional guarantees for the implementation of the contract terms.
In many ways, the reforms of the Cabinet of Ministers are aimed at streamlining of namely this work. They imply that the youth policy, which primarily comes to the improvement of the upbringing and education system, is directly administered by the Prime Minister of the country. The introduction of a position of deputy governor on youth affairs in the composition of local administrations has contributed to the establishment of a drastically new system of prompt response to youth issues. All the measures are expected to contribute to the further improvement of quality of the pillar of the upbringing and education system.
This also applies to the program of measures on the improvement of the pre-school education system, because such important features as the desire for knowledge and learning are laid in each of us namely at this stage. The national program for 2017-2021 focuses on the same objectives.
A broad range of measures have been scheduled for this period. They envisage the creation of conditions for the comprehensive intellectual, moral, aesthetic and physical development of children with an eye to the best foreign practices. Specialists work on improvement of curricula and programs on training and professional development of pedagogical staff of pre-school educational institutions, taking into account current pedagogical technologies and methods.
There is a need to strengthen the logistical capacity of 2,200 pre-school educational institutions, build new pre-school educational institutions in rural settlements, and equip them with tools, devices, teaching aids and multimedia that meet modern requirements. The implementation of these measures provides for allocation of 2.2 trillion soums (currency rates of CB RU from 04.04.2017, 1$= 3623.07 soums).
The coverage of children by pre-school educational institutions will be increased by 1.5 times. 6,100 short-term groups will be created for alternative preparation of children for school. The existing network of pre-school educational institutions will be expanded through the construction of 50 new, reconstruction of 1,167, and overhaul of 983 existing institutions.
The adopted program took into account the interests of those who do not attend nursery schools. Better quality of pre-school education for this category of children will be achieved through the provision of their parents with methodological aids.
Another important document - a five-year program for the development of higher education - is currently under development in the framework of the Actions Strategy along five priority areas for the development of Uzbekistan in 2017-2021. It is an obvious follow up of the one that was completed last year.
Over the past five years, Uzbekistan has created mechanisms to address the problems associated with strengthening the logistical capacity of higher education institutions, ensuring its compliance with international standards. The buildings of the Navoi State Mining Institute, Bukhara Engineering and
Technology Institute and a dozen of other universities have been revamped and repaired over the recent years. The works will be continued. The construction of new campuses for Tashkent State Dental Institute and Tashkent Architecture and Construction Institute has been underway.
Meanwhile, the content of the staff training system will be the spotlight of the new program. It has been significantly changed over the past five years. The total admission quota for this period was not changed much - about 57,000 people for the first course, while specialties undergone significant changes. The Program of Modernization of the Logistical Capacity of Higher Education Institutions and Radical Improvement of Quality of Specialist Training for 2011-2016 is a guide to action.
The proportion of students who major in Engineering, Manufacturing and Construction Industries has increased. In 2010/2011 academic year, they accounted for 23% of the total admission quota, and today it makes up 36%. This was achieved by the conversion of the Andijan and Namangan Engineering and Economy Institutes into the Andijan Machine Building Institute and the Namangan Engineering and Technology Institute, respectively. The admission quota to the Jizzakh Polytechnic University and other technical universities has doubled.
At the same time, the enrollment ratio in Education has fallen from 31.1% to 24.6%. The Tashkent Regional Pedagogical Institute was closed in Angren. The second wave of reduction of economist training has fallen on the same period. The quota of students in Economy and Business has decreased from 8.7% to 5.7%. The education of specialists in ‘Law’ has fallen from 1.3% to 0.9% due to the concentration of study at the Tashkent State Law University and the Karakalpak State University. The admission quotas were reduced for other areas from 35.5% to 32.7% in favor of technical specialties.
Quotas are not the only tool for the government to orient young people in the right direction. Approved in 2011, the higher education area and specialty classifier reduced their number from 228 to 165, and undergraduate specialties - from 1,200 to 500 due to the unification of related specialties and liquidation of unpopular areas in economy and social sectors. Meanwhile, universities annually revise the areas of staff training, with an eye to the needs of the economy. For example, 18 new subject specialties were introduced in various universities this academic year, the bulk of them - in Tashkent State Technical University.
The share of grant places in all areas of education has been optimized with the same overall admission quota. They have been increased in ‘Engineering, Manufacturing and Construction Industries’, as well as in academic and natural sciences, from 35% in 2010/2011 to 40-45% in 2015/2016 academic years through the reduction of seats in ‘Economics and Business’ and ‘Law’ areas, which has proved an effective tool to draw attention of applicants to technical subjects.
All that is actually a call for the youth and an attempt to orient them to the priority directions of the state development. In the near future, close attention will be paid to the country's industrial development. The results of this policy are obvious today. Large industrial giants, including Ustyurt Gas Chemical Complex, have been commissioned. It is decided to create new free economic zones in Khazarasp, Gijduvan, Kokand and Urgut. They will need young engineers.
The priority of information technologies is also clear. Today, the republic pursues the policy of creation of advanced industries based on digital technologies, which optimally simplify human labor. Today, ICT has been actively introduced in all areas of life. They make our life more interesting and comfortable. The country is shifting to digital television, broadband Internet access, which significantly expand the opportunities for getting information, and accelerate its exchange.
Significant changes have taken place in staff training in regional universities. The educational process in proximity to employers creates favorable conditions for quality and target-oriented education, as teachers and students have the maximally convenient contacts with the employer.
(As part of the social order of the Oliy Majlis Public Fund for the Support of NGOs and Other Civil Society Institutions).
(Source: «Uzbekistan Today» newspaper)
THE STRATEGY OF ACTIONS ON FURTHER DEVELOPMENT OF UZBEKISTAN
Uzbekistan: Expanding Export Capacity
The further expansion of exports of domestic products in international markets ranks among the main thrusts of the economic block of the Action Strategy. To this end, the establishment of a new specialized foreign trade organization Uztuqimachilikeksport is currently in progress in Uzbekistan.
According to the Director of Advertising and Marketing Department of Uzbekyengilsanoat joint-stock company Davron Akbarov, experts have already specified the key missions and thrusts of the new trade organization.
“This primarily comes to the provision of marketing, information and consulting services to small businesses and private entrepreneurs operating in the system, assistance in expansion of exports of light industry products through promotional rallies and broad coverage of export capacity at exhibitions and in print publications. Besides, Uztuqimachilikeksport will also contribute to the technical and technological upgrade of textile enterprises,” he underlined.
Manufacturers of cotton, mixed and silk fabrics, textile, knitwear products, hats, socks, textile haberdashery and accessories are exempt from income tax and property tax, small businesses and micro firms are released from single tax payment and mandatory contributions to the Republican Road Fund by January 1, 2020. Cancellation of compulsory sales of a part of foreign currency proceeds from exports to authorized banks as of January 1, 2017 is another important factor to scale up export capacity of light industry enterprises.
Exports of yarn, ready-made garments, knitted fabrics, tablecloths, fabrics, children's clothes and other light industry products has been growing dynamically. The number of trading houses abroad has been expanding accordingly. More than forty trading houses have been operating in Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, China, and Turkey. In the future, the specialized foreign trade organization Uztuqimachilikexport is expected to contribute to the establishment of ten more trading houses in Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Ukraine, Belarus, and some European states.
“The key function of the new structure is to provide a system-based assistance to light industry enterprises in organizing exports of their products under direct contracts and through trading houses abroad. The organization is also entrusted with promoting the development of intra-industry cooperation through the supply of domestically produced technological equipment, spare parts and components, raw materials. That all should help us to increase the production of finished goods by 2-3 times,” said Davron Akbarov.
There is no doubt that Uztuqimachilikeksport will play an important role in expansion of the ranks large enterprises and further enhancement of their export capacity.
(As part of the social order of the Oliy Majlis Public Fund for the Support of NGOs and Other Civil Society Institutions)
(Source: «Uzbekistan Today» newspaper)
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