April 24, 2013
Cabinet session sums up 1Q results
On April 23 the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Uzbekistan has held a session, devoted to the results of the socio-economic development of the country for the first quarter of 2013 and evaluating the implementation of the major directions and priorities of the economic program for the current year, determined by President Islam Karimov at the government session on January 18 this year.

The results of measures, aimed at achieving the established macroeconomic development goals, increasing competitiveness and deepening structural reforms in the economy, in particular by focusing on implementation of the adopted programs of rapid modernization and development of industries and sectors of the economy, and increasing employment and welfare have been thoroughly considered and analyzed at the meeting.

It has been noted that due to systematic and consistent implementation of the program of modernization and increasing competitiveness of the economy, despite the ongoing crisis in the global economy, macroeconomic stability and sustainable growth of the Uzbek economy have been maintained. In the first quarter of 2013 the GDP grew by 7.5 percent, the volume of industrial production by 6 percent, agriculture by 6.2 percent, construction by 13.2 percent. The state budget was executed with a surplus of 0.4 percent of GDP. The inflation rate has not exceeded the forecast parameters.

As a result of measures, taken to stimulate domestic demand and a more complete saturation of the domestic market with competitive domestic products, production of consumer goods rose by 9.4 percent, retail trade by 13.1 percent and services by 9 percent. The share of services in GDP increased to 52.5 percent compared to 52.1 percent a year earlier. Production of localized products has increased by 40.4 percent, with an estimated effect of import substitution for 1 bln. US dollars.

The active investment policy, aimed primarily at accelerated development and enhancement of economic modernization, contributed to the growth of the investment volume by 7.2 percent, including increase in foreign investments by 35.5 percent, of which about 84 percent are foreign direct investment. 587 manufacturing facilities have been commissioned and 114 new investment projects worth 4.3 billion US dollars have been launched.

1.3 trillion soums (official exchange rate of 24.04.2013. $1=2059.59 UZS) have been allocated in the first quarter to implement the State Program \"Year of well-being and prosperity.

A special attention to the detailed analysis of implementation of the programs of modernization, technical and technological renovation of the industries, product diversification, development of new competitive products and increasing the volume and range of exports, have been paid at the meeting.

During the discussion the managers of Uzbekneftegaz, Uzkimyosanoat, Uzbekenergo, Uzbekyengilsanoat, Uzpharmsanoat, Uzeltekhsanoat and a number of agricultural machinery enterprises were demanded to fill the existing lag in the implementation of individual investment projects and the timely introduction of new production facilities.

The state of execution of orders of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan on integrated development of the regions through utilising unused reserves and production capacities, accelerating the development of processing, construction and service sectors, have been considered and analysed. It was noted that in accordance with the consultations of the Ministry of Economy with the executive authorities in the regions, ministries and business associations on a critical assessment of unused reserves and production capacities, the medium-term programs of socio-economic development of the regions have been adjusted to ensure close linkages between sectoral and territorial development.

The meeting also closely reviewed the implementation progress of road transport and communications infrastructure development, modern housing construction in the rural areas. It was noted that in the first quarter of this year, construction and reconstruction works at the Uzbek national highway for a total of 62 billion soums have been carried out. The reconstruction of the 42-kilometer stretch of the Tashkent-Osh highway bypassing the city of Kokand was completed, 45-km railway lines were rehabilitated. The management of Uzavtoyol SJSC, the Republican Road Fund, the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Karakalpakstan, regional and Tashkent city administrations were urged to take additional measures to speed up road construction and repair work on public roads and residential streets, as well as construction and commissioning of road infrastructure and service points along the Uzbek national highway, to ensure better control over the quality of work.

The chairman of the State Committee of communications, informatization and telecommunications technologies reported on introduction and development of modern information and communication technologies at ministries, agencies, business associations and large enterprises, primarily on formation of departmental resources and databases, organizing interagency exchanges and provision of interactive public services and development of web-sites. Heads of sections of the Cabinet of Ministers were instructed to take special control over the course of developing and implementing the comprehensive program for the formation of the \"e-Government\", introduction of electronic forms for the delivery of interactive public services to businesses and individuals.

The tasks arising from the speech of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov at the \"Modern Housing Construction as an Engine of Integrated Development and Transformation of Rural Areas, Improvement of Living Conditions of the Population\" international conference, held on April 17 in Tashkent, require the management of regional administrations of all all levels, officials of the relevant ministries, agencies, business associations and enterprises to strengthen efforts, aimed at radical transformation of the village, further gradual increase of the level and quality of life of the rural population, bringing them closer to modern standards. The heads of executive bodies in the regions, managers of \"Qishloq Qurilish invest\" and QishloqQurilishbank were given specific instructions to accelerate the construction of new 10,000 rural houses on the standard design, planned for this year.

A particular attention has been paid to the implementation of the programs on job creation and employment for 2013, as well as employment provision for recent graduates of professional colleges. On this issue the reports of the minister of labour and social protection, director of the Center of secondary special and professional education, Tashkent city and Kashkadarya region governors were heard. It was noted that 250.4 thousand new jobs, of which over 150,000, or about 60 percent in rural areas, have been created in Uzbekistan in the first quarter of 2013.

Following the discussions, relevant decisions to ensure implementation of the major priorities of socio-economic development of Uzbekistan in 2013 have been adopted. (Source: UzA)


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