Statement by H.E. Mr. Alisher VOHIDOV
Permanent Representative of the Republic of Uzbekistan to the United Nations
Geneva, 27 June, 2000
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen,
Five years ago, in March 1995, representatives of more than 150 states of the world gathered at the historical Summit, devoted to the issues of social development. At the outcome of this milestone event the Copenhagen Declaration for Social Development was adopted. The Declaration contains ten commitments, aimed at the improvement of life and working conditions of multi-billion population of our planet. The Summit adopted the detailed Program of Actions that determined the strategy of implementation of tasks, contained in the Declaration - eradication of poverty, achievement of full employment and encouragement of social integration.
Today five years after the Copenhagen Summit, we have seen encouraging signs that the issue of social development has been placed in the forefront of many national and international agendas. The international community is increasingly focusing its development strategy towards a "human-centered" vision.
Let me take this opportunity to share with you our brief assessment of the implementation of the outcome of the Copenhagen Summit during past years in Uzbekistan.
The Republic of Uzbekistan in a short period of time since 1991 has made a significant step, having transformed from totalitarian, administrative - command system to formation of free market economy.
With gaining its independence it became possible and essential to conduct an independent policy of renewal and progress. The priority of needs and interests of people increasing of their well-being, creation of new democratic institutions of power, formation of civil society have been set as the cornerstone of this policy. The realization of this policy, first of all, requires maintenance of peace and civil accord in the society. Realizing its importance and taking into account the social economic situation in the Republic at the beginning stage of the reforms, the Government of Uzbekistan has developed its own way of reforms and progress that incorporated the principles that provide social consent in the society. The way chosen by the republic was directed to the formation of socially oriented market economy. The basic idea of this direction is a creation of its own model of economic development, which brings together rules of market relations and national peculiarities, social guarantees and social justice.
The basis of national model is defined by five key principles: priority of economy over politics, leading role of the state in organization and realization of economic reforms, supremacy of law, evolutionary transition to the market relations and strong social policy. The implementation of the market relations should be accompanied by realization of effective pre-emptive measures on social protection of the population of the republic, reflecting demographic specifics, traditions, customs, mentality and lifestyle of the people. The realization of these principles in Uzbekistan has a special value, since the belief of the people in the necessity of realization of these reforms depends on it.
The strong social policy is the
key element of the Uzbek model of stage-by-stage transition to market economy.
Social guarantees provided by the Constitution of the Republic of Uzbekistan
have been determined as the legal basis for this policy. It means, that transition
to market economy is not the end in itself. All economic, social, political
reforms are aimed at creation of worthy conditions of life and activities. That
strategy of development assumes, first of all, targeted social protection of
population and creation of conditions, in which each able-bodied citizen can
realize own abilities and provide oneself and the family the worthy existence.
The realization of this policy
is being achieved by:
· application of preemptive measures on social protection of population. It means, that introduction of concrete market mechanisms is necessarily preceded by adoption of measures on enhancement of social support for population;
· avoidance of collapse of the social systems. We proceed from the understanding that in transition period the Government should control the state of social sphere and render its necessary support;
· stage-by-stage reformation
of social sphere. In this case alteration of priorities and mechanisms of social
protection of population should be carried out adequately according to changing
As a result of realization of social and economic reforms we have managed to prevent sharp decline in the level of living of the people, to preserve peace and stability in the republic. The strong system of targeted social protection of population was created. The population adapted to the conditions of market economy. In light of general increase of economic activity of population the significant progress is observed in private entrepreneurship. The national program of training of specialists, who correspond to the modern requirements, has been developed on the basis of essentially new approaches to the issue concerning the structure of employment of population. Along with this the special attention is paid to the creation of conditions and opportunities, that should provide broader realization of interests of the people.
· strengthening the targeted
social protection, i.e. maximum orientation of the social assistance to those
groups of population who are in real need of it;
· orientation of the social assistance of the state towards family as it is a structural unit of the society and its basis;
· provision of social guarantees
of the state to each indigent family;
· encouragement and formation of an active economic performance of members of the society and prevention of parasitic smugness;
· strengthening the motivation of high-efficiency and high productive work and its rewarding in conformity with final- result, intellectual and physical costs;
· combination of state social
assistance and non-state forms of social protection.
In accordance with the commitments of the Copenhagen Declaration, the problem of eradication of poverty has been placed among the priority goals of the social policy conducted in the republic. At the same time it is recognized that the civil peace and social accord in the society directly depend on a degree of social integration of indigent sectors of population, providing them with the necessary level of social guarantees and access to the systems of distribution. In this connection the policy of maintenance of incomes of indigent families has an important significance.
According to international experts,
the unique mechanism of support of needy families through bodies of self-governance
of citizens has been created in the republic. These bodies are granted the right
to distribute among needy families budget allocations, which are provided by
the government for purposes of social protection of families. The mechanism
of rendering social assistance to families combining in itself a legal basis
and proportional distribution is especially sensitive to changing conditions
and needs of families and is characterized by low "mistake of excluding" at
a targeted distribution of assistance.
The republic is a region with a high level of labor resources. It has about 40 % of all labor resources of the Central Asia.
According to the estimates at the
beginning of the XXI century the age structure of well-bodied population will
mainly consist of 30-49 age groups which are considered to be of high labor
activity. At the same time its labor potential is characterized by high level
of qualification. Every fourth person engaged in the national economy has high
or secondary education.
In the process of further deepening
the economic reforms in Uzbekistan, economically inefficient workplaces are
liquidated, technical base of manufacture is updated and working conditions
are improved. Simultaneously with a structural reorganization of national economy,
inclusion of the mechanism of bankruptcies, formation of competitive environment
there is a growth of scales of liberation of labor and intensity of professional,
branch and territorial movement.
Active actions on prevention of
mass dismissals, development of the alternative forms of employment, structural
shifts in manufacture, expansion of scales of a privatization prevented the
extreme growth of unemployment in the republic.
The state service of employment
has been created. This body carries out the regulation of laborforce flows in
the market of labor, professional training of unemployed, organization of temporary
positions, rendering financial support to the people who lost their job.
The national model of construction
of socially oriented market economy envisages the formation of real market of
labor resources, which acts as the main mechanism of distribution and redistribution
of labor-force. The administrative compulsion to work in any form is legislatively
forbidden, the right of the citizens to work is guaranteed.
Strengthening the role and increase
of the activity of participation of women, which comprise more than half of
population of Uzbekistan, in public and political processes have a special significance
for maintenance of social integration. According to the Constitution and the
laws of .the Republic of Uzbekistan women are provided with an access, which
equal with an access of men, to a state service, participation at all levels
of management of state and public-affairs.
Women comprise 44 % of total labor-force engaged in a national economy of the republic, including: industry - 32,9, agriculture - 35,1, communication - 41,3, construction - 12,1, trade - 28,5, public health services - 74,5, education - 64,3, culture - 77, science and art - 42,7, government apparatus 28,7 %.
The social economic policy of Uzbekistan
is based on the recognition of equality of rights of women and men with regards
to conditions and payment for work, employment and social protection. Any gender
discrimination prohibited by the Constitution. The necessary legal, economic
and social conditions for active participation of women in the state and public
affairs are being consistently created in the Republic of Uzbekistan.
It is known that Uzbekistan is the
region of traditional distribution of Islam. The adoption of the Law "On freedom
of conscience and religious organizations" (June 14, 1991), first in the history
of Uzbekistan, has resulted in qualitative changes of the role and the legal
status of religious organizations. The new state policy provided more opportunities
for development of activities of various religious organizations on the territory
At present time 1583 religious organizations
representing 11 religious confessions have been registered in the bodies of
justice of the Republic of Uzbekistan.
I would like to emphasize following
aspects of the national model of transition of my country to socially oriented
· The stable legal basis providing and encouraging social justice, equality of opportunities for men and women, respect of rights and basic freedom of citizens, de jure and de-facto liquidation of discrimination has been created;· The policy of social development is concentrated on satisfaction basic needs of all people, elimination of main causes of poverty and indigence. Measures directed at the provision of necessary economic and social protection of the people with regard to unemployment, illness, birth and education of children, physical inability and old age have been developed and are being carried out;
· The opportunities to increase the productivity have been widened through investments in development of human resources, development of technologies leading to productive efficient employment, and stimulation of individual and private entrepreneurship activity;
· The international legal documents concerning issues of protection of human rights and liquidation of discrimination have been recognized; institutions providing social integration of vulnerable sectors of population, children, elderly and disabled people, and affirming the leading role of family have been created and being strengthened;
· Macroeconomic and structural
policy aimed at the achievement of social progress by maintaining the sustainable
economic growth is being conducted. In these purposes internal accumulations
and external resources are mobilized for purposes of productive capital investments
and of interests of social development.
We are confident that coordinated efforts of the international community are necessary for realization of global trends of social policy on eradication of poverty, the provision of productive employment, strengthening of social integration.
United Nations and its specialized agencies in cooperation with the World Bank, International Monetary Fund and other multilateral institutions engaged in the issues of social development, should and can render countries, which are in the process of progressive transformations, an assistance for maintenance of economic growth and further social development.
In our opinion most perspective and effective way is to provide assistance, first of all, to those countries, which maintain the necessary level of political and social stability. The establishment of such priorities would allow carrying out the effective investments in accelerated social and economic development and, thus, would subsequently ensure a due level of contributions of these countries in the course of global humanitarian development.
In this regard Uzbekistan considers
that a special fund under the United Nations auspices should be established.
This fund should provide support and protection to social programs in countries
which are firmly carrying out radical economic, social and political transformations
that based on the principles of protection of human rights and freedom, dignity,
equality, respect, mutual responsibility and cooperation.
We realize and highly appreciate the importance of this meeting. Undoubtedly the results of the discussions and the documents to be adopted, despite the difficult process of their preparation, will make a significant contribution in promoting the progress and social development of all nations of the world.
Thank for your attention.