Azerbaijan, Baku / Trend / The dilapidated housing and communal service of Azerbaijan (HCE) predicted its soon death, but it still lives. In addition, it works although only supports the clearness of the dust tanks. However, it is also a big work if to imagine that HCE will not remove the dust. Another function of the HCE is to collect payments fro the population for the amortized service and exploitation of the buildings.
Rarely people do not complain of their housing, exactly the quality of the housing and communal services. Almost the amortized service is absent, capital repair of the buildings are not carried out. Formally the HCE does not do anything except removal of the dust, but in reality, continues managing the housing complexes and collecting payment for the housing.
However, the complaints are being received not only about the HCE, but also by HCE. The key complaint of the workers of the communal sphere is the low tariff for the services rendered by them. Population pays off the communal services according to the tariffs established by the Cabinet of Ministers, which are significantly lower than their market prime cost. The equipment and materials necessary for the HCE are acquired by the local executive powers for the prices which are much more than the payments collected from population.
It is seen from the official statistic data on the number of the employees of the housing and communal sector that beginning from 1995, it steadily increases and it brings to the increase of the labor payment. It is initiated to decrease the number of HCE employees because many communal services (electricity, gas, water supply) are rendered by certain organizations (Azerenegy JSC, Azerigaz JSC, Azersu JSC).
The 2008 investments for the housing and communal economy is forecasted to be increased by 21.5%.
It is obvious that currently the activity of the HCE presents ineffective system. Even the previous way of establishing effectively working communal sector - development of the market relations in the HCE through attracting investors - was limited through transferring electricity-distributing networks to the management of Turkish Barmek Company and their scandalous returning.
Therefore, the work of Azerbaijan Government on the program reforms of the housing and communal sector and announcing 2008 as year of reforms in this sector raise the hopes for settlement of the problems in this sphere and transformation of the HCE into effectively functioning mechanism.
(Ellada Khankishiyeva - expert of Trend Analytic Center)