NEWS AND EVENTS
March 27, 2012
In today\'s world it is difficult to find more multifaceted civil institution than the family. For hundreds of years, our society has strived to valuate, improve it, support it, and make it more resilient to rapidly changing realities. Such attention to family is hardly accidental. Since it is the foundation stone of modern society. Experts say that the family is a reflection of the entire society and the country. Thus, what face does the modern Uzbekistan have? UT reporters analyzed the values of multinational family of the young republic.
By tradition, every year on the eve of celebrating Constitution of Uzbekistan, President determines the state’s next year’s policy. This decision puts the guidelines for the development of society and economy, defines the next stage’s priorities. The year of 2012 was named “The Year of Family,” which is logical due to the work carried out in the country to support the major element of our society. The state program The Year of Family - elaborated in close cooperation of government agencies, charitable foundations, non-governmental and community organizations - has become a kind of think tank of new initiatives for further development of this multi-faceted social institute. It should be noted, the program is not a one year program, it has long-term strategy to support family values.
Such large-scale and diversified approach is especially prominent in current volatile global economy. Many developed countries have cut their social spending by chopping the funding of projects aimed to support young families, youth, students and disadvantaged citizens. Uzbekistan plans to spend on the program over 1.4 trillion soums (Exchange rate of CB 1USD-1839,40 soums) and $114 million this year alone. Generally, it’s scheduled to implement 87 projects in eight key areas.
Legislation is always the foundation without which it is impossible to build a strong and efficient mechanism to support any initiative. Support for families and general social preference of the state’s policy are enshrined in the Constitution of Uzbekistan since its adoption in 1992. It defined family’s standing in the society, declared equality of rights among spouses, parents\' obligations towards their children and adult children’s responsibility to care for their parents. The state also officially took duties to care for orphans and children deprived of parental care.
These and other issues were presented in the Family Code adopted in 1998. These documents have embraced best traditions of the folk. Experts say that all changes that the national legislation will undergo in connection with the implementation of measures to support and develop the institution of family, will also take into account the prevailing culture, traditions and customs of the people. The laws, regulations and rules, which will be adopted to develop and improve family life, will reflect the requirements of today and tomorrows, and further strengthen public\'s attention to this matter.
Five bills - regarding different aspects of improvement family life - will come into effect in Uzbekistan until the end of this year. The draft law \"On Amendments and Additions to the Family Code of the Republic of Uzbekistan\" is one of the most talked about in public. This document, which will take into account national peculiarities, traditions as well as international experience in the field of family law, will introduce several new provisions in the legislation. They include improved mechanism of children adoption; introduction of a new practice, when a child’s alimony, fixed by a court’s decision, will be accumulated at the child’s special bank account - the child will be able to withdraw the accrued money after attaining the age of legal majority; raising the minimum marriage age for women to eighteen, with a specification of exceptional cases when it can be lowered to not less than seventeen.
Another draft, which has focused much of public attention, affects family business. The new document will put into current legislation a new legal form of economic activity - family entrepreneurship. The law will clearly state the participants of a family business, the scope and legal basis for its activity. It is planned that this document will also simplify registration and liquidation procedures for family business; enables the access to public infrastructure and the use of living space in the course of business activity.
Affordable and comfortable housing
Today one of the main issues that concern young families is the acquisition of affordable and comfortable house. Many young couples will be able to successfully resolve it this year. Special program - Housing for Young Families – is now being scheduled in Uzbekistan. It implies the construction of 100 houses, with forty-eight apartments each, in cities during 2012-2013 year period. The flats for young families will be sold with mortgage loans for up to 15 years and an interest rate not more than the Central Bank’s refinancing rate. Some apartments in new houses will be provided to orphans and children left without parental care. Moreover, government together with banks creates an effective mechanism for the formation of resources for housing construction and mortgage loans to young families.
Interestingly, the state will not just provide young families with subsidized apartment mortgages; it will also create facilities to add comfort to the apartments. Commercial banks will develop program - Consumer Loans for Young Families - which will provide funds amounting up to 200 times of the minimum wage in the country for 3 year period, at a reduced interest rate, on purchase of durable goods of local production, including furniture and household appliances.
To facilitate the payment of loans the government plans to release members of young families from the tax on personal income in the amount of funds allocated to pay off consumer credits received for the purchase of durable goods - refrigerators, TV sets and furniture of domestic production. For up to three years, the members of young families will enjoy tax abatement, when they will pay two times reduced tax rates on property and land tax.
Presenting domestically produced bedroom furniture to graduates of orphanage houses \"Mehribonlik\" who marry for the first time and who is under 30, is another interesting novelty.
The improvement of existing living conditions, especially in rural areas, is another area of development. The state will spend about 107 billion soums on the implementation of the Program of further improvement the provision of rural communities with drinking water. In addition, Uzbekistan together with leading international financial and lending institutions will continue to modernize the water supply system of the country.
For the future
Today, maybe nothing else can bother young people as hard as can the issue of employment and making the right choice of profession. After all, from those decisions depends their future. It is difficult to ponder about creating a full-fledged family when there are no prospects for decent work. Therefore, at least 107,000 jobs will be reserved for the graduates of educational institutions this year at domestic enterprises and organizations. There will also be courses of training and retraining for at least 16,000 unemployed youngsters and 52,000 paid public works.
Starting from April 1, 2012, the three years release from fixed tax of individual entrepreneurs living in mahallas and engaged in the provision of services in the same dwelling zone, will become another incentive for the creation of new jobs in communities and rural areas. Experts estimate that it will increase the level of development of the service sector, raise the quality of services provided to population and enhance job creation in rural areas.
Special emphasis will be done to ensure women with work. The development of small businesses and micro enterprises will create 240,000 new jobs for them. The women will find: 114 000 jobs in the sphere of services; 90,000 in family business; 20,000 in industry; 16,000 in construction sector. Business incubators, where specialists in different fields will advise novice entrepreneurs, will be set up in three regions of the country in order to support girls and young women engaged in business. Moreover, in 32 areas with high demand for workplace, it is envisaged to organize special seminar \"Start Your Business\" where 1,300 young women and girls will learn the basics of business and professions that are in demand in labor market.
The projects aimed at strengthening the role of self-government institutions in society and in everyday life of families are another notable content of the program. Mahalla should play special role in this process. There will be a comprehensive study of all self-governing bodies and the analysis of public and social work in communities of all regions of the country. Basing these data, specific proposals to address the unresolved issues will be issued.
At least 50% of all donations, coming into charitable Mahalla Fund for community work days on the occasion of holidays Navruz and Independence Day, will be redirected to provide social support to needy families. In addition, specialized government bodies, charitable and public organizations will assist lonely elders, disabled and low-income citizens living in the communities, especially in remote rural areas, through the repair of their homes and the purchase of rehabilitation aids, such as wheelchairs, hearing aids and others.
10 billion soums will be allocated, just these year, on the beautification of inter-areas, on repair of roads and pavements, on construction and renovation of playgrounds in all regional centers, in Nukus and Tashkent, as well as in cities of national and local subordination, in settlements and towns and in other living areas.
Another innovation. There will be set up \"Parental universities\" at each self-government bodies. The goal is to improve legal, ethical, moral, and physiological knowledge of parents in upbringing the younger generation. There will be big work in strengthening cooperation among educational institutions, family and mahallas in upbringing and educating the younger generation. According to experts, this will increase the responsibility of all parties for the spiritual and moral education of children.
The improvement of the quality of medical care provided to mothers and children is the major focus of the program. Uzbekistan is going to implement an ambitious plan to meet the goal. In particular, during the year there will be Health Weeks organized for women of childbearing age in all regions of the country. All children will undergo prophylactic immunization against vaccine-preventable diseases. There is also a strategy to combat helminthiasis among children.
The work on establishing 264 model rural medical units has already started. The units will provide consultative, diagnostic, preventive and curative services to families. There will also be 69 specialized family polyclinics under the existing urban ones.
Also this year, 400,000 pregnant women living in rural areas will be provided for free with special general health-improving multivitamin complexes. 10,000 women will pass through free diagnostics on primary identification of women\'s related cancer diseases.
Many efforts will be done to train and retrain the medical personnel and to re-equip medical institutions. To do this, the curriculum of medical schools and the curriculum of Tashkent Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education have been supplemented with advanced standards and techniques of WHO and UNICEF in maternal, child and family health.
The Republican Center for Children Social Adaptation will be greatly upgraded. Beside general repair works, there will be built a specialized rehabilitation pool with a room for physical therapy in the center. The center’s branches will be opened in future in Qarshi, Samarqand and Farghona. New medical equipment will continue to arrive into ambulance, care-prophylactic and child health facilities in regions.(Source: “Uzbekistan Today” newspaper)