October 07, 2013

Economics:
Uzbekneftegaz to invest US$200m to explore heavy oil by 2021
The Government of Uzbekistan approves general plan of Jizzakh city
Society:
Uzbekistan streamlines the system of continuous education
The number of NGOs and civil institutions that have received financial support from the Public Foundation under Oliy Majlis has risen by 60.7%
Two exhibitions of archaeological findings have been opened in Uzbekistan


ECONOMY

UZBEKNEFTEGAZ TO INVEST US$200M TO EXPLORE HEAVY OIL BY 2021

Uzbekneftegaz national holding company will invest about US$200 million to explore heavy oil at south and east of Uzbekistan in 2013-2020.

Energonews reported quoting source in the holding that Uzbekneftegaz started to implement exploration programme of heavy oils and bitumen within Korsagly-Dasmanagin zone and Besharcha field in Surkhandarya region and within Ferghana region in the east.

The company believes that the exploration works will help to produce at least 100,000 tonnes of oil a year at above-mention fields, the report added.

China’s CNPC, Czech Republic’s Eriell Corporation and Tethys Petroleum Ltd can be partner of Uzbekneftegaz in exploration works.

Forecasted perspective oil resources of Uzbekistan makes up about 829million tonnes and condensate – 360 million tonnes. About 60% of oil are easily mined reserves. Other resources require additional drilling.

(Source: UzDaily.com)

THE GOVERNMENT OF UZBEKISTAN APPROVES GENERAL PLAN OF JIZZAKH CITY

The Government of Uzbekistan with its resolution approved a general plan of Jizzakh city till 2030, which determines basic foundation, principle and key parameters of the city development.

The general plan envisages several measures directed at developing the city as administrative-economic, cultural and industrial city of Jizzakh region till 2030.

The new general plan was developed based on previous such document, which was approved in 1993 and envisages development of the city to northern and northern-eastern directions. The general plans said that the city includes residential and industrial zones.

It is planned to construct new district in northern-eastern direction with the service objects, which should help to develop this residential area.

The industrial zones will be developed based on existing ones. The industrial zones are located close to residential areas, which will help people easily reach their workplaces.

At the same time, it is planned to move some industrial enterprises, warehouses, construction organization from residential areas to industrial zones. In place of them, it is planned to construct objects of cultural and domestic services.

The general plan envisages strengthening role of the regional center in social sphere. It is planned to construct kindergartens, schools, streets and other objects in each mahalla or district.

According to the general plan, it is planned to construct road, houses, roadside infrastructure, etc. In particular, it is planned to construct roads, which will help to transit flow to reach their destination without entering Jizzakh city. It is also planned to build automobile stations, automobile service centers, and other objects along the roads.

The general plan includes measures on planting trees and plants on streets. Protection zones will be constructed near historic monuments of the city and it is planned to ban advertisement, parking sights, construction of other buildings near historic monuments.

The general plan has other measures directed at developing the city till 2030.

(Source: UzDaily.com)

SOCIETY

UZBEKISTAN STREAMLINES THE SYSTEM OF CONTINUOUS EDUCATION

This week the nation celebrates the Day of Teacher and Mentor, which is annually marked on the first day of October. Grand events are held in all educational institutions of the country, and the major celebration took place on the holiday's eve in Turkiston Palace. Much is said these days on the hard work of teaching, and the challenges facing the representatives of this noble and humane profession.

To date, the schools of Uzbekistan employ 410,654 teachers, professional colleges and academic lyceums - 117,621 teachers, higher education institutions - about 22,000 representatives of the teaching staff. Along with them, the teaching is provided by specialists of preschool education institutions, children's music and art schools, youth sports schools, children's creativity centers Barkamol Avlod, as well as specialized training centers and advanced training centers.

President of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov in his congratulatory message to the teachers and mentors said as follows: "Our people are well aware and highly appreciate the truly crucial role of teachers and mentors, all dedicated workers of the education sector in formation of personalities, in introducing them to knowledge and ideals of humanism, in nurturing them in the spirit of kindness and generosity, making them citizens with a rightful place in society. Taking into account the immeasurable and truly invaluable work of those who took over such an important and responsible mission, 17 years ago our country instituted a Teacher's Day, which is an expression of the views and concerns of our community, all the people."

The importance and significance of the work of teachers and mentors is demonstrated by the scale of celebrations.

The traditional greetings are accompanied by rewarding and encouraging the top specialists. President Islam Karimov signed a Decree 'On awarding the group of distinguished educators and teachers on the occasion of the Day of Teachers and Mentors'. As stipulated by the Decree, two people were awarded the title of 'National Teacher of the Republic of Uzbekistan' and 'Honored Worker of Education of the Republic of Uzbekistan', nine people were conferred the title of 'Honored Youth Mentor of Uzbekistan', and one teacher was given the title of 'Honored Coach of the Republic of Uzbekistan'. Three people were awarded the Order “Fidokorona Khizmatlari Uchun”, 14 people were handed the Order of “Mehnat Shuhrati”, three - the Order of “Soghlom Avlod Uchun” of the second degree, 15 -the Order “Do'stlik”, and 47 - the medal “Shuhrat”.

Plans and objectives on further improvement of the country's system of continuing education are in the spotlight these days. The Laws of the Republic of Uzbekistan 'On education' and 'On the National Staff Training Program' adopted in 1997 were the starting point of building a modern education system basing on the principle life-long education and access to vocational education for everyone. Over the years special programs helped to build a modern network of schools, vocational colleges and academic lyceums to provide all the boys and girls with free 12-year education. There are ongoing targeted programs aimed at the development of children's music and art schools, youth sports schools, children's creativity centers Barkamol Avlod. Besides, a range of measures is currently carried out to improve the higher education system and training of high-level scientific and scientific-pedagogical staff. Close attention is paid to ensuring continuity and quality of training.

IN FOREIGN LANGUAGE

Under the implementation of the Resolution of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan 'On measures to further streamline the foreign language learning system' two programs were approved and are being implemented. One program aims at expansion of the study or foreign languages at all levels of education, and another one envisages the accelerated equipping and upgrade of foreign language classrooms of educational institutions with modern information, communication and learning technologies and facilities in 2013-2016. Much of the scheduled has already been done.

Uzbekistan built a system of provision of students and teachers of general secondary, secondary special and vocational educational institutions with free textbooks, learning and teaching guidelines. The work on the further improvement of textbooks of English, German and French languages is underway.

Experienced psychologists and teachers emphasize that it is better to start the study of foreign languages at an early age. Therefore, as of this year, foreign languages are taught at schools of Uzbekistan not from me fifth, as before, but from the first grade. New educational standards have been approved on this occasion. They envisage specific criteria for assessing the level of knowledge of foreign languages at each stage of learning, and focus on the development of communicative skills.

The innovation has generated the extensive preparatory work at schools. Educational institutions have been provided with teachers. An extensive work has been carried out to advance teachers' skills and train them to work with first-graders. Learning and teaching guidelines on English, German and French languages have been developed for the first grade in short terms with the participation or foreign experts. They include student textbooks, teachers' guides and multimedia aids.

Teaching of certain subjects in foreign languages in higher education institutions is another this year's innovation. They are mostly technical subjects and international disciplines. Experts believe that this approach will further help the graduates to communicate with foreign colleagues, to read and analyze foreign editions. Ultimately, this should contribute to scientific and technical progress in the country, and quick introduction of innovations.

DOCTORS OF SCIENCE

A good command of foreign languages will distinguish the future doctors of sciences as well. The issues of their training rank among the most discussed topics. This is sensible, because since 2013 Uzbekistan has shifted to a single-stage system of scientific and scientific-pedagogical staff training, similar to that in the economically and technically developed countries.

The country has canceled the institution of trainees-researchers-applicants and defending of candidate theses. Under certain approved requirements the graduates or higher educational institutions immediately enter the institution of senior researchers-applicants or become self-employed applicants and work on their doctoral dissertations.

The change allowed escaping from the time when defending of candidate theses and getting a PhD degree was an end in itself, far from the interests of science, scientific and technological progress, when it generated abuses on various stages of preparation and defense of dissertations.

As part of the transition to the new system of scientific and scientific- pedagogical staff training all the standards regulating the process of doctoral study were reviewed. Innovations enhance quality of staff training and catalyze the research activities. The requirements for registration of scientific topics of dissertation research for the degree of Doctor of Science were strengthened. This avoids the shallow themes. A system of testing an applicant's aptness to the scientific and educational work was introduced. It has contributed to targeted staff training.

Generally, taking into account international experience and new requirements for the organization of training of scientific and teaching staff, the whole system of training high-level staff was streamlined. And the work of the Higher Attestation Commission under the Cabinet of Ministers was revised as well: it has become open and transparent, which has significantly decreased the number of bureaucratic procedures on the way to the defense of thesis.

ESSENTIAL MASTER’S

Introduction of a single-stage system of postgraduate education is also conditioned by the transition of educational process to the standards of undergraduate and graduate programs. The two-tier system of higher education has virtually made the institution of trainees, researchers and applicants, as well as defense of candidate theses excessive.

Meanwhile, the transition to a single- stage system of training scientific and scientific-pedagogical staff required streamlining or graduate school system. In this regard, the Resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers introduced amendments to State Higher Education Standards to increase the capacity of the scientific staff working on master's degree, as well as ensure admission to the graduate school for the applicants with an aptitude to research activities and a good command of foreign languages.

The total amount of time of study was redistributed. Theory time was reduced and the time for research activities was extended. It was specified, that a graduate should dedicate 70-75 % of his time for thesis preparation.

The general requirements for the content of the graduate course program were significantly amended as well. From now, the classes on general methodological subjects pay more attention to the formation or skills and abilities of processing scientific and technical information, development of abilities for systematic independent analysis and conclusion on the subjects researched.

The curriculum also focuses on the study of methodology of creativity, general methods of learning, methods of empirical and theoretical research, logic of laws and regulations, ways of argumentation and refutation, foundations of the culture of speech, teaching technologies, core management and economics, practical learning of a foreign language, information technologies and systems.

In conclusion, it is worth noting that all the abovementioned changes once again demonstrate the increasing role of the education system and the job of teaching in the large-scale work on practical implementation of the idea, which is succinctly expressed in the phrase of 'Uzbekistan is a Country with a Great Future.

(Source: “Uzbekistan Today” newspaper)

THE NUMBER OF NGOS AND CIVIL INSTITUTIONS THAT HAVE RECEIVED FINANCIAL SUPPORT FROM THE PUBLIC FOUNDATION UNDER OLIY MAJLIS HAS RISEN BY 60.7%

Tashkent hosted a two-day seminar on "Raising the social significance of the projects, providing effective and targeted use of grant funds".

The event was organized at the initiative of the Parliamentary Commission and the Public Foundation for the Support of Nongovernmental Nonprofit Organizations and Other Civil Society Institutions under Oliy Majlis of the Republic of Uzbekistan jointly with the Independent Institute to monitor the formation of civil society (NIMFOGO), the National Association of NGOs of Uzbekistan (NANNOUz), Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Uzbekistan, Uzbekistan EcoMovement, Kelajak ovozi Center of Youth initiatives, Kamolot, the Public Fund for support and development of print media and news agencies, UNDP.

The main purpose of the event was to provide NGOs and other institutions of civil society with legislative, consultative, organizational, technical and other assistance for the implementation of social projects, strengthening the organizational and informational activities, improving their skills, etc.

The seminar was attended by representatives of national and regional NGOs, winners of the Foundation’s grants, the employees of ministries and agencies, national and international experts, and representatives of the mass media.

The experts, who spoke in the event, noted that the development of civil society is a prerequisite for building a humane and democratic legal state, as defined in the strategic task of state building, in the preamble of the Constitution of the Republic of Uzbekistan.

In Uzbekistan since proclaiming independence, the legislative and regulatory framework has formed and been improving, considerable experience in NGO activities and social dialogue between civil society actors has been gained. Participation of NGOs in the development and implementation of state and regional programs for socio-economic development of the regions, as well as in the monitoring of their implementation is ensured. The results of this activity are an important factor of coordinated and concerted joint actions of state bodies and public organizations.

Since the establishment of the Parliamentary Commission, a large scale of work has been carried out to provide financial support to NGOs, civil institutions through the provision of government grants and subsidies, as well as the placement of the social order.

Funds allocated for the provision of public financial support for programs and projects of NGOs and other civil society institutions, strengthening their logistical and economic base are dynamically increasing.

Accordingly, the social activity of NGOs, civil society institutions in the development, implementation and monitoring of the progress in the implementation of government social programs, regional programs of social and economic development is also rising. Compared with 2011 the total number of NGOs, civil institutions that received public financial support from the Public Foundation under the Oliy Majlis of the Republic of Uzbekistan grew by 60.7 %.

Thanks to the financial support of the Public Foundation, in the framework of the objectives set out in the State program "Year of well-being and prosperity" in the form of social order over 12 NGOs and its regional units on the basis of bilateral agreements signed with the public authorities implement 18 major projects.

Since the beginning of 2013 till now 239 socially significant projects worth 3 billion 303.8 million soums have been implemented.

Thanks to the active state financial support on the basis of grant competitions number of ongoing projects of regional NGOs, compared with 2011 increased by 62.6 %.

During the event, it was mentioned that in the third quarter of this year, the number will increase to 250, and the amount of financial support to reach 3.5 billion soums. Thus the number of supported projects of regional NGOs will increase by 72.8 %, compared with 2011. This year alone, on the implementation of socially significant projects around 2,000 NGOs and other civil society institutions were involved.

The government support helps to ensure true independence of national NGOs, greatly reducing their application for foreign fund, increases social partnership of NGOs with local authorities in addressing urgent social, economic, and humanitarian issues.

According to the Public Foundation, state support under the Parliament is directed at strengthening effective mechanisms of social partnership both in center and locally. Especially at strengthening cooperation of NGOs and public authorities in the implementation and management of major government social programs in education and health care, ecology and the environment, the formation of harmoniously developed generation, social support for vulnerable people , entrepreneurship and home-based work, further democratization and the building of capacity of independent media and NGOs.

The result of the purposeful activity was the fact that today the country's civil institutions, including NGOs and the media are becoming an important tool to ensure a balance of interests in society, strengthening of social control and interaction between state and society. They provide protection of democratic values, human rights, freedoms and legitimate interests of the people and create conditions for citizens to exercise their potential and provide assistance to improve the social, socio-economic activity and legal culture.

Professionals and experts of the Public Fund, NIMFOGO, NANNOUz, Eco Movement organized a number of seminars. The seminar participants were to develop strategies for the implementation of grant projects in the field of environmental and health education of young people and children, they discussed the process of implementation of the project and the opportunity to strengthen social partnership, they also learned to identify the causes hindering the effective implementation of the project, and gained skills to prepare reports on the results of the implementation and monitoring of the project.

During the event, a memorandum was signed with UNDP in Uzbekistan in order to implement joint programs and projects, attracting their grants to support specific socially significant projects, stimulate the development of civil society institutions.

The workshop also hosted a ceremony of certificate awarding to 91 winners of the Fund’s grants.

We add that holding such seminars for public organizations will strengthen social partnership, facilitate transparent implementation of grant projects, and improve their social relevance, effectiveness, and intended use of grant funds.

(Source: Uzreport.com)

TWO EXHIBITIONS OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL FINDINGS HAVE BEEN OPENED IN UZBEKISTAN

"To the Heart of Asia" will be led all who enter into a new building of the Termiz Museum of Archaeology. This is where the exhibition devoted to ten years of work of the joint expedition of Czech and Uzbek archaeologists in Uzbekistan. From the doorstep impressed with the bright information booms and learning from them a lot about the content of the excavations in the region, people plunge into the mysterious world of history.

It is quite in the main hall, as if solemnly. Here, in these days, visitors have a unique opportunity - for the first time to see the findings, which are expected more than a few thousand years old, and which have not been seen by anybody, except the archaeologists.

"The exhibition is fascinating, like draws us to the mazes of time, taking away from the present and bringing to the period of ancestors. Here, each subject - pieces of pottery, clothing items, and many others as like whispers about its surprising, unknown history, talks about the time to which it belonged," shares her impressions one of the visitors of the museum, the teacher Karina Ospanova.

All this turned possible thanks to the joint work of our researchers and a group of young archaeologists from the Karlov University in Prague. For ten years the young Czech scholars come to the south of Uzbekistan to the vicinities of the town Sherobod to help to reveal the secrets of the ancient history of our ancestors. Of course, the results of this joint effort have already been presented to the public. Thus, in 2011, it was announced about this for the first time in Uzbekistan and in 2012 at the Karlov University. Within this exhibition, in Termiz the philosophy department of the Karlov University has prepared 92 pages of valuable information telling about the archaeological study of )on davlattepa and Sherobod district, which was conducted by the Czech-Uzbek archaeological expedition.

No less interesting exhibition is offered by the organizers of a mobile archaeological exhibition on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the French-Uzbek cooperation in archeology. A special exposition at the Afrosiyob Samarqand Museum of History that is located between the Hazrat Hizr Mosque and the bridge over the Siyob, fully and widely tells visitors about the unique artifacts found together with French colleagues. The most valuable finds of archeologists of the two countries became a major topic of discussion among all who have seen them these days. Later the exhibition will be put on display in Bukhoro, Termiz, and completed in the capital.

(Source: “Uzbekistan Today” newspaper)