January 8, 2013
UZBEK BANKING SYSTEM: THE NEW LAW OPENS NEW OPPORTUNITIES
GREEN LIGHT TO YOUNGSTERS
UZBEK GOVERNMENT TO RATE UNIVERSITIES
UZBEKISTAN FOOTBALL FEDERATION WINS FIFA FAIR PLAY AWARD 2012
UZBEK BANKING SYSTEM: THE NEW LAW OPENS NEW OPPORTUNITIES
It is hard to imagine the developments of competition-based market relations without provision of quality banking services to the various markets actors. After all, the banking system, serving investors and producers, largely determines the quality of the country's economic development as a whole.
At present 29 banks with 826 regional branches, more than 2,300 mini-banks and above 9,000 banking units, as well as 84 non-bank credit organizations operate in Uzbekistan.
On December 18, 2012, the Law of the Republic of Uzbekistan "On the private banking and financial institutions and guarantees of their activity" entered into force. Deputy Director of the Legal Department of the Central Bank of Uzbekistan Jahongir Nurmuratov spoke to the UzA reporter on the mechanism of introduction and enforcement of the new law:
- Under the leadership of President Islam Karimov consistent reforms, aimed at creating an independent national banking and financial system, are being implemented - says J.Nurmuratov. - Thanks to these measures consistently developing and improving modern financial model that meets international standards has been created.
This is also highlighted in the results of new studies of the Washington D.C.- based International Monetary Fund (IMF), according to which our country has 48 commercial bank branches per 100 thousand people, and 1026 deposit agreements per 1000 people. Based on these indicators Uzbekistan was given the highest rating and took a leading position among the countries of Central Asia as per the number of bank branches.
The fact that in 2012 27 domestic commercial banks, including eight private banks received high "stable" ratings from international rating agencies deserves a particular attention. As a result of the measures taken to strengthen the financial stability of financial institutions and to enhance their long-term resource base financing of the real sector of the economy and small businesses and private entrepreneurship has accelerated.
According to expert opinion, there are positive changes in the activity of commercial banks in investment and lending. For example, in 2012 the share of loans, directed to the real economy grew by 30.6 percent. 86.3 per cent of the allocated credits are sourced from internal resources of commercial banks. It should be emphasized that the quality of the loan portfolio of commercial banks are also on the rise, as evidenced by the increase in the proportion of investment loans with a maturity period of more than 3 years. In 2000 the long-term loans in the total loan portfolio accounted for 35 percent, by the end of 2012 they reached 75 percent.
Investment loans of commercial banks, which have been directed at modernization of the real sector enterprises of the economy, their technical and technological re-equipment have had important role not only in the high economic growth, but also macroeconomic stability and prosperity in the country in times of global financial and economic crisis.
Currently there are 9 private banks with over 20 branches and more than 90 mini-banks, 80 private leasing companies, 70 micro-credit institutions and pawnshops, and 29 private insurance companies in our country. In the first 9 months of 2012 the volume of lending increased by 36 percent and lending to small businesses and private entrepreneurship - 34 percent, investment financing by 37 percent. However, there is still scope for further development of their activities, as well as establishment of new private banks and other private financial institutions with private capital involvement in the banking and financial sector.
The new law “on the private banking and financial institutions and guarantees of their activity" incorporates many definitions that somehow were left out in the national legislation and prohibits state officials to unlawfully interfere in the activities of commercial banks and their subsidiaries, including the appointment of the management, asking for various kinds of payments and contributions from the funds of the bank. Regulatory and law enforcement authorities can not interfere in the activities of banks related to management of business risks associated with the formation of the loan portfolio and bank assets.
The law also specifies procedures for audits of private financial institutions. According to it, audits and examinations of financial and economic activities of private banks and financial institutions must be be held in a planned manner, not more than once every five years by a decision of the authorised body in accordance with the law.
In short, the law would create a level playing field for private banking and financial institutions and strengthen the system of state guarantees of their activity. These measures will enhance competition and improve the quality of customer service in the banking and other financial services, will create conditions for the development of a modern market infrastructure that meets the highest international standards. (Source: UzA news agency)
Green Light to Youngsters
Uzbekistan offers opportunity to become Doctor of Science under 30 years of age
From January 1, 2013, a new single-stage model of postgraduate education is enforced in Uzbekistan with defense of doctoral thesis that replaced the two-stage system that had envisaged the defense of candidate’s (PhD) thesis. The new system was created in order to implement the Decree of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan “On further improvement of the system of training and attestation of scientific and scientific-pedagogical personnel.” UT correspondents retraced what has changed in the course of reforms.
The reform enhanced the value of graduate training in preparing personnel of high qualification. Respectively, there have been reinforced the requirements for the quality of training specialists in graduate courses. This follows from the decree of the minister of Higher and Secondary Special Education, under which approved the new statute on graduate courses. The document envisages the inclusion in the Master’s work plan of the pedagogical and qualification practice, on implementation of which the student must report at the monthly meeting of the department. A requirement has been worked out, in accordance of which already in the first year of study graduate students must have at least one published research paper or thesis.
New requirements for the preparation and defense of Master’s theses have been defined as well. Their topics will be approved in October and November, not at the beginning of the second semester of the first academic year. New volumes and requirements to the content of the theses have been approved. Fundamentally new is that now the information about the upcoming Master’s thesis topic, surname, name of the student and his supervisor will necessarily be published on the official website of the higher educational institution which trains this student the Master. Otherwise, it will be possible to defend the thesis within three years after graduation.
The rules have been established, in accordance of which the academic degree of Doctor of Science is conferred by the scientific councils awarding the academic degree of Doctor on relevant directions of the science on persons, having higher education with the degree of Master, and on those who defended their Doctoral thesis to the results of academic pursuits at the Institute of Senior Fellow-Candidates.
Besides, to the defense of Doctoral thesis are allowed those who legalized their status as independent candidates that have the degrees of Bachelor or Master, record of service of no less than 5 years, having inclination to academic pursuits and certain scientific achievements (patents for invention, scientific publications, participation in scientific-technological developments, and others) that meet the assigned requirements.
The Institute of Intern-Researcher-Candidates and defense of Doctoral theses have been eliminated. All those who studied at this level of education have been re-attested. Those whose training level and research topics meet the requirements of the Institute of Senior Fellow-Candidates, will continue to learn and work, but on their Doctoral theses. It is expected that among those who failed in attestation, in the near future will reconsider the topic of their research and register in as independent candidates and continue preparing their theses. In subsequent years, there will be enough of those who would prefer to enroll to the Institute of Senior Fellow-Candidates.
All existing rules have been revised, in the result of which have been enhanced the requirements to the registration of scientific topics of the thesis research for earning the academic degree of Doctor of Science. In particular, there has been introduced testing to determine the applicant’s inclination to the scientific and scientific-pedagogical work.
The changes occurred from the necessity of ensuring the openness and transparency of of the process of preparation for the thesis defense, and elimination of unnecessary bureaucratic procedures. In particular, in this context it was decided that now the date of the defense of theses will be published in the national newspapers.
The list of areas of science and codes of specialties for the training of scientific and scientific-pedagogical personnel of high qualification has been revised. Now it is increasingly combined with the classifier of higher education. Due to the revision, the list was reduced from 462 to 283 positions. These changes occurred in the result of extension of specialties that were undertaken in order to ensure a single methodological approach to research in the fields of education and science. Besides, six new specialties were included in the list.
Specialized councils for awarding academic degrees have been replaced by scientific councils for awarding the degree of Doctor of Science. The reduction was due to the extension of specialties on which will be organized training of personnel of high qualification.
And, the most important thing! In Uzbekistan has been created a fundamentally new mechanism that should assist in rapid inflow of young scholars in science. The promising young people in science have all possibilities to earn Doctor of Science and get all the privileges, offering big opportunities in implementation of bold scientific projects, up to 30 years-old. (Source: Uzbekistan Today newspaper)
Uzbek Government to rate universities
President of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov signed a resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers “On introduction of system on rating assessment of higher educational establishments of the Republic” on 29 December 2012.
The document was accepted to stimulate improvement of level and quality of scientific and pedagogic activity at higher educational institutions of Uzbekistan, achievement of high figures of use of scientific potential of teachers, quality of teaching and training of students, etc.
According to the resolution, the system of annual rating assessment of universities will be introduced in Uzbekistan in 2013.
The resolution said that the State Testing Center under the Cabinet of Ministers of Uzbekistan will rate universities in the country.
The rating will be developed based on systematic selection and formation of database, which characterize level and quality of scientific-pedagogic activity of universities.
The resolution said that the State Testing Center will be published annually before 1 March in mass media of Uzbekistan.
The rating will based on four main criteria – index of teaching quality (35%), index of students skills and graduates (20%), scientific potential of universities (35%) and other indicators (10%).
According to the resolution, the State Testing Center will prepare analytic report on current state of development of universities in the country with concrete proposals on further improvement of the sector. (Source: UzDaily.com)
Uzbekistan Football Federation wins FIFA Fair Play Award 2012
International Federation of Association Football (FIFA) handed over FIFA Fair Play Award 2012 to Uzbekistan Football Federation (UFF).
According to the FIFA, Uzbekistan Football Federation (UFF) are winners of the FIFA Fair Play Award for showing that fair play and competition are not mutually exclusive, but complement each another.
Guatemalan Football Association and Turkish club Eskisehirspor were also nominated to the FIFA Fair Play Award 2012. Guatemalan Football Association was nominated for its commitments to fight match-fixing.
Uzbekistan Football Federation (UFF) also won the 2012 AFC Fair Play Association of the Year award. (Source: UzA news agency)