Uzbekistan, Tashkent, Jan. 24 / Trend D.Azizov /
USAID is currently implementing a program worth $32 million in Uzbekistan, USAID Tashkent Office head John Pennell said.
The agency directed $16 million for projects to develop health and $10 million for the development of democratic governance, and $6 million for economic development.
In the health sphere, USAID is focusing its efforts on reducing the spread of infectious diseases (HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis) among people entering those risk groups by improving prevention and awareness. Population Services International (PSI) and Project HOPE are partners in this work.
In November, USAID presented the five-year Health Outreach Program (HOP) with a $2.3 million budget to prevent and treat HIV and tuberculosis in Uzbekistan. HOP will provide technical assistance, training, and direct outreach services to increase access to quality HIV and TB prevention and treatment interventions among the most at-risk populations.
USAID also supports the dissemination of the principles of evidence-based medicine and service quality improvement.
As a part of the work on economic development, the agency realizes projects to support fruit and vegetable producers, agricultural companies and water-user associations in several areas. In the direction of development of the just and democratic governance, USAID supports capacity building of civil society organizations to address such key issues as women's rights and the environment, prevention of trafficking through information campaigns, and counseling for victims of trafficking and their reintegration into society. In this area Development Alternatives Incorporated (DAI) acts as the main implementing partner.
The Uzbek leaders of civil society, private sector and government visit the United States to undergo training and networking for the development of civil society.
During the first years of operation in Uzbekistan, USAID assisted the Uzbek government in the restructuring of primary health care in rural areas and effective vaccination. It also helped to improve the management of water resources and quality of primary education, and to reform the banking system, monetary policy, fiscal analysis and tax policy. Later, USAID assisted in establishing credit unions and microfinance institutions to expand access of small and medium-sized businesses to financing.
The organization plans to continue to contribute to improving services of delivery and management in selected local government. The new program will strengthen the capacity of lawyers and administration of the Ombudsman on human rights issues. Among implementing partners are the National Democratic Institute (NDI), Cardno Emerging Markets and other organizations.
USAID operates under a bilateral agreement with the government since 1992. In total, USAID provided $330 million to Uzbekistan under the U.S. government assistance programs.