DAILY NEWS HERALD
On January 25, a meeting on efficiency of geological exploration and production activities carried out in “Uzbekneftgaz” joint stock company, the state of ensuring domestic demand for fuels and lubricants, and tasks of the industry for the future was held under the chairmanship of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev.
Reforms were carried out in the oil and gas industry in accordance with the Action Strategy on five priority areas of development of the Republic of Uzbekistan in 2017-2021. In particular, activities of “Uzbekneftgaz” JSC were improved by the resolution of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan “On measures of improving the management system of the oil and gas industry” of June 30, 2017.
The Program for increasing extraction of hydrocarbon raw materials up to 2021 has been approved, mechanisms for its implementation have been determined.
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There are many underground resources in our country. A new system of their development and processing has been created. The question arises: what are the benefits of these resources for our people, emphasized the President of Uzbekistan at the meeting on efficiency of geological exploration and production activities carried out in “Uzbekneftgaz” joint stock company, held on January 25.
Fulfillment of the forecast for oil and gas condensate, and liquefied gas production was achieved in 2017. However, many problems have been accumulated in the industry over the past years.
The forecast on natural gas and oil products production for 2017 was not fulfilled due to a lack of sufficient stock growth. The forecast on the volume of drilling operations in the process of geological exploration was executed at 77 percent. Implementation of these activities at full volume would allow to ensure the stock growth. The forecast on operational drilling operations was fulfilled only by 49 percent, the forecast on the number of wells, construction of which is completed, by 53 percent.
Activity on modernization and repair of facilities for extraction of natural gas and gas transmission networks does not correspond to the required level. As a consequence, 6 percent of this resource is lost in the process of delivering produced gas to the consumer.
President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, critically analyzing these and other shortcomings, defined important tasks on increasing hydrocarbon reserves and production.
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In accordance with the State Program for geological exploration activities, it is necessary to increase the volume of natural gas reserves by 57 billion cubic meters, oil and condensate reserves – by 3,6 million tons due to discovery of new fields, in 2018. This was noted at the meeting that was held on January 25 under the chairmanship of President Shavkat Mirziyoyev.
In the current year, it is necessary to complete construction of 255 new wells and 26 new technological facilities, and overhaul 76 wells for ensuring production of 63 billion cubic meters of natural gas, 3 million tons of oil and condensate.
JSC “Uzbekneftgaz” plans to implement 24 investment projects for 2 billion 756 million dollars. These funds will be used for implementing such projects as construction and provision with modern technologies of Jizzakh oil refinery, equipping the second stage of Kandym gas processing complex and construction of Kandym group of deposits, production of liquid synthetic fuel in Shurtan gas chemical complex, exploration of the “25 years of Independence” field in Surkhandarya and development of its feasibility study. 9 of these 24 investment projects will be implemented this year.
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At the meeting, held on January 25 under the chairmanship of President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, it was noted that more than half of investments attracted to the economy of Uzbekistan fall on the oil and gas industry and every spent dollar should yield an economic effect.
It was entrusted to revise the terms of all concluded production sharing agreements and organization of joint ventures, taking into account state interests.
Attention was paid to issues of diversification of logistics routes of the sphere, identification of transport corridors and tariffs, which guarantee a reduction in costs for importing raw materials and exporting products, saving energy resources consumption and expanding alternative energy sources.
Physical deterioration of gas distribution system and allowable losses in delivery of gas to consumers were criticized. Instructions were given on development of gas distribution systems of high and medium pressure in cooperation with foreign companies, transfer of motor vehicles to gas fuel. Importance of increasing the culture of rational use of energy resources among consumers was also noted.
Tasks were defined on development of a concept for the oil and gas industry development until 2030, acceleration of activities on identifying the credit rating of JSC “Uzbekneftgaz”.
Appropriate instructions were given on adopting necessary documents regarding the issues discussed at the meeting and timely implementation of indicated measures.
The Presidential Decree, signed January 22, approved the Government Program for the implementation of the Strategy for Actions in the Year of Support for Active Enterprise, Innovative Ideas and Technologies.
The document identifies its major dimensions, as well as priority measures for its practical implementation.
The decree announces a two-year moratorium on inspections of financial and economic activities of business entities. Thus, from the time the decree is published, entrepreneurs can safely carry out their activities without diverting their time and resources to inspections by the controlling bodies.
Another important novelty is lifting the ban on hiring – by employers – of citizens who do not have a temporary or permanent residence permit or account at the place of stay. This will allow citizens to realize themselves in any region of the country, especially in the city of Tashkent and the Tashkent region, without any restrictions on employment. Promising specialists can work in the metropolitan region regardless of the place of permanent or temporary residence permit or registration at the place of stay.
The state program consists of five sections. The first is directed at the improvement of the system of state and public construction. The key step will undoubtedly be the adoption of the Law on Civil Service. Making service in public institutions truly prestigious, the document will primarily contribute to the creation of a decent system of remuneration and social protection of civil servants, and also increase their responsibility for the state of work in the entrusted area.
Real decentralization of state functions and powers will be carried out. First, certain functions of the government, especially in the field of permit and licensing procedures, will be transferred to ministries and other government agencies, as well as to local authorities. Second, the powers and positions of the hokims of all levels as responsible for the implementation of state policy, ensuring the rights and interests of citizens in the relevant region will be substantially expanded. The ultimate goal is to make sure that hokims have real powers, which in fact will allow for the acceleration of socio-economic development in regions and the elevation of well-being of the population.
As a new mechanism for realizing the rights of citizens to participate in governance, a system of collective electronic petitions will be introduced. This scheme will allow citizens to raise specific issues before representative bodies of state power, which should respond to an appeal approved by a certain number of citizens. Thanks to this mechanism, active citizens and public organizations can become the initiators of addressing various problems.
The next important direction of the government program is to ensure the rule of law and further reform of the judicial and legal system. It is planned to work out a concept for the development of criminal and criminal procedural legislation in 2018-2021, revise the limitation period for bringing a person to criminal liability. It provides for the liberalization of criminal and administrative liability, improvement of procedural norms.
To enhance the judicial control over the preliminary investigation, the courts will be given the right to issue a sanction for a search and wiretapping of telephone conversations. In order to prevent violations of human rights, pre-trial detention centers and penal institutions will be equipped with video surveillance.
The government program provides for measures to simplify the institution of registration and the passport system. In particular, citizens who do not have a permanent residence permit in the city of Tashkent and the Tashkent region will be able to purchase real estate on the secondary market.
The third direction of the program is devoted to the development of the economy and support for active entrepreneurship. In this sphere, a gradual transition to a new model of innovative development is projected, based on advanced ideas, smart technologies and cutting-edge know-how.
Legal frameworks will be developed for the creation and development of venture funds, venture financing, as well as mechanisms to stimulate the introduction of innovations and new technologies into the economy.
Tax privileges are granted through to 1 January 2023 to venture funds, high-tech start-up projects, research institutions, innovation centers, and design bureaus on income received from the sale (transfer for use) of their own new technologies.
To ensure transparency and legality of the provision of land, it is intended to introduce online trading on the Internet. It is envisaged to create a system for the sale of state assets through electronic trade platforms.
The legislation on banks and banking activities will be radically revised, digital banking, Internet banking and other modern technologies in this sphere introduced.
Particular attention will be paid to the development of the travel sector, to stimulate the development of inbound and domestic tourism, to simplify administrative and visa procedures for tourists.
The next section of the government program deals with the development of the social sphere. In order to determine the amount of income required for decent living conditions of the population, legal regulation of issues regarding the ‘consumer basket’ is provided. A step-by-step transition to the system of determining the amount of wages, pensions and other social payments is planned taking into account the ‘consumer basket’ in the context of the regions.
Work will continue to further perfect the system of healthcare and improve the quality of medical services. It is projected to introduce the system of ‘smart medicine’, innovative technologies in healthcare. Establishment of 2 thousand social pharmacies that will provide the population with high-quality medicines at affordable prices is envisaged.
To ensure the growth of public demand, especially among young families, in the accessible housing in 2018, the volume of construction of this type of housing will be increased by 1.5-2 times. About 5.3 trillion soums (currency rates of CB RU from 26.01.2018, 1$= 8163.93 soums) are assigned for these purposes.
For full coverage of the population with telecommunication services, it is designed to lay 2,000 km of fiber optic communication lines in remote areas, increase the Internet speed by 2.5 times and put into operation of more than 4,000 mobile communication base stations.
In addition, the concept of the state policy on cooperation with compatriots living and working abroad will be developed and adopted.
The religious education system will be revised to make it more effective and useful, especially among young people.
In total, 13.5 trillion soums and 1.3 billion US dollars will be allocated for implementation of the measures stipulated in the government program.
The implementation of the measures outlined in the program will become a powerful impetus for the enhancement of economic development in the country, a real increase in the well-being of the population and improvement of the quality of life.
(Source: «Uzbekistan Today» newspaper)
Uzbek leader approves measures to improve general secondary, secondary special and vocational education
President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev signed a decree “On measures on cardinally improving system of general secondary, secondary special and vocational education”.
The document was adopted to improve the system of general secondary, secondary special and vocational education based on experience of developed foreign states and create conditions for training highly skilled specialists.
According to the decree, Uzbekistan will introduce mandatory 11-year general secondary education from 2018/2019 academic year.
From 2019-2020 academic year, professional colleges will accept graduates of the 11th grade of general educational schools on voluntary basis to receive professions. The education term is from six months to 2 years.
A presidential decree dated January 25 approved measures to accelerate the improvement of the system of emergency medical care.
The resolution provides for the establishment of integrated call centers with uninterrupted round-the-clock operation at all ambulance stations in the city of Tashkent and regional branches of the Republican Scientific Center of Emergency Medical Care. This would ensure the prompt reception of appeals and timely provision of medical care.
The resolution notes that emergency medical care will be provided on a free basis by all medical organizations, regardless their forms of ownership. Medical institutions are prohibited to refuse to provide emergency medical assistance to persons in life-threatening or health condition.
A business seminar has taken place in Ferghana with the participation of entrepreneurs from this region and business representatives from the Chinese province of Jiangsu.
The favorable environment for international cooperation in the business sphere created in our country, the privileges and preferences provided contribute to the sustainable development of the economy. The event is also organized to further expand trade, economic and investment cooperation with foreign entrepreneurs.
In the Ferghana region, around 200 joint ventures operate in various sectors of the economy, which indicates the interest of potential partners and the confidence of foreign investors in the sustainability of our economy and the prospects for its development. In particular, in recent years, as a result of close cooperation with Chinese business people in the region, more than 20 joint ventures have appeared. Currently, it is planned to implement many promising projects in the Kokand Free Economic Zone.
The business seminar was another opportunity to strengthen ties and discuss new projects. It was attended by representatives of almost 100 companies and concerns operating in engineering, pharmaceuticals, construction industry, textile, food, chemical, electrical industries, alternative energy and modern technologies, agriculture.
“Jiangsu Province is one of the leaders in China in terms of industrial development,” says Jiangsu company deputy director Jia Yinke. “Today we got a close look at the economic opportunities of the Ferghana region. The work carried out in Uzbekistan on extensive support for entrepreneurship deserves attention.”
The event provided information on the economic potential of the region and the investment climate created here. Investment agreements on further expansion of mutually beneficial partnership in various spheres have been signed.
(Source: «Uzbekistan Today» newspaper)
Delegation of Uzbekistan completed its first participation at the international textile exhibition “TexWorld USA” in New York, which was held from 22 to 24 January, 2018.
About 25 thousand visitors from more than 60 countries, including representatives of major design and trading companies of textile products attended the event.
According to the Embassy of Uzbekistan to the United States, within the framework of the exhibition events, presentation of the industrial and export potential of the textile industry of the Republic, as well as a briefing on the issues of cooperation of Uzbekistan with international organizations in organization of labor for growing cotton was organized.
An increased interest of exhibitors, especially the American trading networks, to Uzbek textile products during the event, was observed. Special attention drew t-shirts, Polo shirts, sweatshirt for children and adults.
On the basis of participation of the Uzbek manufacturers at the exhibition, agreements were reached on supplying a large consignment of Uzbekistan textile products to the US market.
It should be noted that many visitors of the exhibition praised the potential of the Uzbek textile producers and were deeply impressed with the quality and price competitiveness of goods compared to large manufacturers in a wide region.
On January 22, 2018, a forum on “Uzbekistan’s Foreign Policy: change and continuity under new leadership” was held at the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute (CACI) in Washington DC, USA.
According to the Embassy of Uzbekistan in the US, the event was attended by representatives of leading research institutes, non-governmental organizations, media, diplomatic corps and staffers of the US Congress.
Chairman of CACI Frederick Starr stated that large-scale reforms have been implemented in all spheres for a short time after the presidential election in Uzbekistan: steps were taken on liberalizing the national economy, the system of public administration has been reformed, opportunities were created for dialogue between people and government, activities of the mass media have been significantly intensified, the rights and interests of citizens is being protected. Uzbekistan took a course of rapprochement with neighboring countries in its foreign policy, Tashkent initiatives receive wide support in all the capitals of the region’s countries and Afghanistan, dialogue with leading Western countries, including USA has strengthened.
Director of the Center for Political-Military Analysis at the Hudson Institute Richard Weitz noted, that foreign policy initiatives of Uzbekistan open new opportunities for Central Asia. The Republic is promoting the agenda, which is based on the idea of a joint solution to existing problems. Thanks to this a shared understanding on the need to strengthen “mutual and frank dialogue” has been formed today in the region. Uzbekistan remains true to the fundamental principles of its foreign policy: Tashkent maintains equal relations with all states, on the basis of national interests and development priorities of the country.
John Herbst, director of the Atlantic Council’s Eurasia Center drew attention to significant strengthening of Uzbek-American relations over the past year. In his opinion, this is due to similarities of positions of the presidents of the two countries on a number of current issues in the sphere of politics, economy and security.
The participants of the forum noted that measures adopted in Uzbekistan over the past year allow to assess the prospects for further development. The current course of Uzbekistan’s leadership is aimed at achieving long-term strategic results, thereby strengthening the country’s prestige in the international arena and increasing the interest of foreign business to investing and implementing specific projects.
Following the forum, it was announced that two more similar events, dedicated to reforms in Uzbekistan in the sphere of public administration and protection of human rights and economic modernization of the country, will be held in CACI in the coming months.
(Source: Press Service of the MFA of the Republic of Uzbekistan)
Construction works have kicked off in the capital city in the area of the Astronomical Institute of the Academy of Sciences. In a few months there will be a park called Astronomy and Aeronautics. Director of the institute, Shukhrat Egamberdiev, has told us about the transformations taking place.
– The park will preserve all the trees. New convenient tracks will be broken. The shores of the irrigation ditch Akkurgan shall be landscaped for walks. Historical objects will appear on the upper shore of Akkurgan. Along with the museum, all the old telescopes will be repaired, the buildings will be restored. This applies to the French telescope, installed in the ancient tower in 1895. The tower itself will be restored with preservation of appearance – we will replace only the rotten boards and we will update the roof with stainless steel sheets. The most interesting is that we bring the telescope to the original authentic state, we will remove all electric motors with reducers, it will move when the hand wheels rotate by hand, like a hundred years ago! In the solar telescope tower, we plan to place a museum for the study of the Sun.
Our Astronomical Institute is 145 this year. All these years, numerous studies, including applied ones, were carried out. For this purpose, special equipment was used. Moreover, it should be noted that astronomers always use the most modern devices at the moment. In our collection there are many very interesting samples of such equipment, some of them we exhibited in the museum in the building of the institute and now we want to create a separate Museum of Astronomy within the park.
For the museum planned to use the old ‘upper’ building, built in 1873. But it turned out that it was quite dilapidated and could not survive repair. We invited specialists. Preliminary for the examination holes were drilled to determine the condition of the walls, it turned out that the saman (straw) had decayed for 140 years, turned into a sand-rubble. Various options for saving the building were considered, for example, the erection of external walls, but all of them turned out to be unsuitable from an engineering point of view. It was not easy for us to make a decision, but the building (which, by the way, was rebuilt many times over many years) had to be demolished. According to the plan, exactly such a burned brick will be erected, and in it we will open the Museum of Astronomy, more precisely, the Museum of Astronomy Instruments. But the tower of the solar telescope, adjacent to this building, built their burnt bricks, it is well preserved.
The new layout will correspond to the thematic areas of the museum. For example, there will be a hall (room) with equipment, posters, tables for determining the geographical coordinates of settlements – this was an actual task in those far times. Devices for determining the latitude and longitude of the desired place were carried on camels and on the spot they made the necessary measurements.
The next room will be devoted to the definition of time. After Huygens’ invention of the pendulum clock in the 17th century, the question arose about their synchronization, for this purpose the rotation of the Earth was used and astronomical observations were needed. All tools for clarifying and synchronizing time will be presented in the museum.
A separate section of the museum will tell about the Maidanak Observatory, which is one of the five best observatories in the world under observation conditions. Few people know that such a place was searched for more than 10 years, it is unique in the number of clear nights, in terms of turbulence and other criteria. There is a whole direction of astronomy – an astroclimate with a large set of parameters under study.
And there is an idea to restore the office of Academician Shcheglov, who headed the institute for a long time. We have preserved the director’s desk of the middle of the last century, an old telephone, an ink device, a typewriter and other attributes of recent history.
Now about the new objects. On the site between the French telescope and the Museum, we plan to build an existing model of the Ulugbek observatory at a scale of 1:5. If in this observatory the radius of the sextant was 40 meters, then it will be 8 meters. Everyone can get acquainted with the work of the observatory, see how Ulugbek and his colleagues determined the data of the heavenly bodies. It is possible that the model of the observatory will allow us to better understand the ideas of Ulugbek and the methodology that he used. In addition, busts of great astronomers of antiquity will be installed, a sundial and other interesting cognitive objects are built.
On the territory of the institute there was a seismic basement, now abandoned, half-fallen down. It will be reconstructed, it will install an operating seismograph of the old design (now all seismographs are replaced by digital seismographs), provided by the Institute of Seismology. There will be stands telling about the earthquakes and the work of the seismograph. Everyone will be able to go down and personally track the fluctuations of the soil from distant earthquakes, metro or a nearby truck.
On the lower bank of the canal, to the right of the institute building, it is planned to build a planetarium. And, it will be not just a modern building, it is planned to equip the most interesting, including interactive exhibits on the space theme. Around the planetarium will be a model of the solar system, in one scale will be shown the orbits of all planets with their mock-ups.
Also there will be a museum of aviation equipment. The Ministry of Defense will provide decommissioned refurbished equipment, aircraft and helicopters. All exhibits will be open, so that children can sit in the cockpit of the pilot, try on the parachute and learn technical information.
There will also be recreation areas, a café and a Ferris wheel to explore the park from above.
(Source: «Uzbekistan Today» newspaper)
Uzbekistan Football Federation was renamed into Uzbekistan Football Association (UFA) on 25 January 2018. New President of UFA was also elected.
During the reporting-election conference of the organization, the decision was adopted to rename Uzbekistan Football Federation to Uzbekistan Football Association.
The conference also elected new President of the UFA. First Deputy Prime Minister, chairperson of Uzbekistan Temir Yollari Achilbay Ramatov was elected as the President of the UFA.
Umid Ahmadjanov was the President of Uzbekistan Football Federation. Earlier, Umid Ahmadjanov was elected as the President of National Olympic Committee of Uzbekistan. Ahmadjanov was elected as the first deputy President of the UFA.