A Roundtable Discussion in the Central Election Commission of Uzbekistan
The Republican Press Center on covering the elections of President of the Republic of Uzbekistan has played host October 4, 2016, to a panel discussion on the significance of presidential ballot. The event was organized by the Central Election Commission in cooperation with the Academy of Public Administration under the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan.
The roundtable discussion gathered members of the Central Election Commission, the Academy of Public Administration, jurisprudence scholars, experts in the field of electoral law, representatives of mass media.
Chairman of the Central Election Commission Mirza-Ulugbek Abdusalomov noted that in the years of independence, as a result of steadfast modernization of the political, public and legal spheres, a national electoral system has been created in our country that meets the highest democratic requirements. In this regard, the right of citizens to participate in government and governance is being secured to a full extent. It becomes imperative to cement the democratic principles of organization of elections on the basis of universally recognized norms and provisions enshrined in Uzbekistan’s Constitution and laws.
Preparations for the elections due on December 4 this year are carried out amid the environment of enhancing processes of reforms and democratization, growing political and public activity and civic responsibility of the people and their mounting demands in the assessment of socio-political and socio-economic transformation, of the activities of political parties and civil society institutions. It is carried out in strict accordance with the Program of Major Events for the preparations and conduct of elections of President of the Republic of Uzbekistan.
It was highlighted at the occasion that elections are held in our country on the basis of universally accepted standards of universality, equal suffrage, direct and secret ballot, voluntary participation in voting, and transparency. In particular, in accordance with amendments and addenda introduced in 2015 into the Law on Elections of President of the Republic of Uzbekistan, electoral campaigning is prohibited not only on the election day, but also the day before the vote.
As it was noted at the panel discussion, a crucial role in ensuring the openness and transparency of the electoral process is played by mass media. The Uzbek media have been active in covering the preparations for the forthcoming elections in the country. As a clear indication of this, the Central Election Commission has to date accredited more than 500 representatives of foreign and national media.
All the activities of election commissions are held with the participation of journalists. Regularly aired are TV and radio programs on the subject matter, while videos are demonstrated explaining the stages of the electoral process to voters. The campaign is also widely covered on the pages of print and online editions.
Those speaking at the roundtable discussion expounded on the importance of the upcoming presidential elections, on the basic criteria for the conduct of election campaign with an eye to the principles of publicity and transparency, and on the latest amendments and addenda introduced into the electoral law.
At the panel discussion that was held in the format of interactive dialogue and exchange of views, the participants received detailed answers to their questions.
(Source: Republican Press Center on Covering the Elections of President of the Republic of Uzbekistan)
A project on the establishment of the country's first plant for conveyor belts, agricultural and automobile tires is currently in progress on the territory of the Angren SIZ.
Today, the republic is in dire need of domestic production of rubber products. In the country, which annually produces more than 200,000 cars, where millions of cars run on the roads, not to mention the agricultural sector with its tractors and industries operated by conveyor belts, it is the issue of economic sovereignty.
According to experts, imports of rubber products in Uzbekistan cost more than $160 million annually, tending to grow with each passing year. A new plant, which is scheduled for commissioning in the third quarter of 2018, is called to change the tendency. In the first phase, it will produce 3 million tires of two dozen sizes, 200,000 agricultural tires and 100,000 linear meters of conveyor belts, allowing meeting the needs of the domestic market by almost 100%.
The turn-key contract for the construction of the plant was signed with the Chinese company Poly Technologies Inc in August 2014. It aimed at using advanced technologies and equipment in order to establish the production of tires in line with high international standards.
The total cost of the project is $213.9 million. The Asaka Bank and Eximbank of China signed a $156.3 million loan agreement to finance the project in July 2015. The remainder of the funds will be allocated by the Fund for Reconstruction and Development of Uzbekistan, O’zkimyosanoat, O’zavtosanoat, Navoi Mining and Smelting Plant, and Almalyk MSP.
Solution of organizational issues and opening of funding proceeded with construction works. It is worth noting that the project provides for the maximum use of local material and human resources. For example, O’zbekgidroenergokurilish workers were involved in the preparation of pits. Ferganakimyomontaj specialists built almost three kilometers of fence. A railway track is laid by workers of Uzbekistan Railways. The construction site is supplied with electricity and water from two drilled wells. A concrete unit with the capacity of 90 cubic meters of concrete per hour is supplied with cement from Jizzakh Cement Plant. Fitting for the foundation is delivered by Uzmetkombinat. Sand and gravel are brought from nearby quarries.
Concrete works are underway at the construction site. Orders for equipment supplies have already been placed under the processing chain, prior to the completion of construction. The equipment will be delivered in Angren in 2017.
Experts already work on prospects of production development. They include expansion of tire production capacity to 5 million items, as well as the organization of truck tire production. Over time, as part of localization and import substitutiuion, specialists of Uzmetkombinat will help to handle the production of steel cord for tires, and Uzbekneftegaz National Holding Company will help with synthetic rubber, which will allow refusing from imports, increasing the level of localization of domestic rubber products, reducing their cost and increasing export capacity .
(Source: «Business partner.uz» newspaper)
In the near future Uzbekistan is planning to establish a network of advanced production facilities, which specialize in the production of particle boards from cotton stalks
Today, Uzbekistan ranks among the world’s leaders in the production and export of cotton. Every year, the country produces more than 3 million tons of raw cotton and 1 million tons cotton, over 50% of which is exported.
Cotton harvesting leaves are large amounts of cotton stalks in the fields, which are irrationally used by farmers as a fuel, for example. The way out was found with the involvement of Chinese expertise and technologies, which have long been used in China for the production of particle boards.
The first three pilot manufactures will be created in Jizzakh, Surkhandarya and Tashkent regions on the basis of the selected operating companies that have an appropriate engineering, communication and transport infrastructure, and are equipped with advanced high-tech equipment. The total project cost will exceed $7.3 million.
The biggest manufacture will be established in Urtachirchik district of Tashkent region. It is scheduled to produce up to 30,000 cubic meters of products annually. The Chinese investors intend to invest at least $3.5 million in its development. The two other facilities will have smaller capacities – up to 10,000 cubic meters of chipboard per year. All the facilities are scheduled for launch in late 2017.
The government entrusted Uzstroymaterialy Company with implementation of projects. The company is responsible for the development and approval of the detailed feasibility study of projects, envisaging the use of modern energy-efficient process lines and equipment by December 1 of the current year.
It is planned to concurrently start the working on the system of cotton stalk supply for the production of particle boards, select specific farms and settle a mechanism of clearing payments with producers.
In order to ensure high structural durability and safety of products the government assigned the Uzstandard Agency to approve unified technical requirements for chipboards in line with international standards by the end of November 2016.
(Source: «Uzbekistan Today» newspaper)
On October 4, 2016, the delegation of the Republic of Uzbekistan headed by the Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdulaziz Kamilov took part in the inter-regional meeting in the format “Central Asia – the European Union” in Brussels.
Â The heads of foreign offices of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and the European Union discussed the state and prospects of cooperation with a focus on various aspects of economic development.
In the plenary session, and other formats, the sides exchanged views on regional and international problems, issues of security and combating extremism.
(Source: Press Service of the MFA of the Republic of Uzbekistan)
On October 4, 2016, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Uzbekistan Abdulaziz Kamilov, who is on a visit in Brussels, met with the European Union Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development Neven Mimica.
During the meeting, the sides discussed practical aspects of cooperation between Uzbekistan and the EU in trade, economic and investment fields in terms of their further strengthening and development.
Special attention was paid to the state and prospects of cooperation in the format “Central Asia – the European Union”.
(Source: Press Service of the MFA of the Republic of Uzbekistan)
The Law ‘On labour protection’ will come into force in Uzbekistan in three months. What is going to change? An Uzbekistan Today reporter addressed the Ministry of Labour with this question.
The new edition of the Law of the Republic of Uzbekistan ‘On labor protection’ is designed in accordance with the approved laws of the Republic of Uzbekistan, taking into account the positive experience of industrialized foreign countries. It includes the basic concepts that meet the requirements of international standards.
The new law has defined the state agencies responsible for occupational safety and health management, and their powers, as well as a public authority and its control powers. The act expands the powers of trade unions in terms of the implementation of public control of labor protection requirements that are set out in collective agreements (contracts).
It also reviewed a system of organization of occupational protection in the workplace. In particular, with regard to the organizations and enterprises with less than 50 people of staff and with a low level of danger in the production process, labor protection measures are performed by professional players of this market on a contract basis.
As part of enhancing the responsibility of employers and employees, separate articles stipulate the rights and duties of employers and employees in the field of occupational safety and health, as well as regulations on the voluntary audit of occupational safety management system, and the procedure of evaluation of workplaces in working conditions and state examination.
Â Experts of the Ministry of Labor believe that the new law will raise the responsibility of both employers and employees. It will also contribute to the proper organization of labor protection, ensuring safe working conditions for employees.
It is expected that the act will strengthen the prevention and reduce occupational accidents and diseases, which, in turn, would enhance the economic viability of enterprises, strengthen the social protection of workers, including minors.
“The implementation of the Law ‘On labor protection’ in the new edition envisages the revision of occupational safety and health related regulations, as well as adoption of an integrated programm on streamlining working conditions in enterprises,” emphasized the Ministry of Labor of Uzbekistan.
(Source: «Uzbekistan Today» newspaper)