The USAID Land Reform project held an event to mark the completion of three years of efforts to create market-based land use rights, as well as honouring the major achievements of the Government of Tajikistan to promote land reform, Asia-Plus reported on Thursday.
U.S. Ambassador to Tajikistan Susan M. Elliott and Deputy Prime Minister Murodali Alimardon opened the ceremony, which was attended by representatives of the donor community and officials of the Government of Tajikistan.
From the outset USAID Land Reform was designed to promote and protect the rights of land users, the development of market institutions, foundations and land use rights through the provision of technical support and training programmes working with the public and media. The project also provided support to strengthen the capacity of the Government of Tajikistan in the adoption of new laws and policies based on the principle of 'freedom of farming' and the effective implementation of land reform in order to create a market of land use rights. Effective market for land use rights will develop an environment for the most productive, efficient and sustainable land use.
USAID also informed farmers about their rights over land through integrated training programmes and working with the public, as well as providing legal assistance through advice and support for the rule of law by providing technical training programmes on land relations to local government representatives, judges, prosecutors and lawyers. More than 107,000 people received direct support from the project during the three years of its activity.
USAID programmes have provided assistance to the state in land policy and legislation since 2004. Land reform is an integral part of an initiative of the U.S. government on food security and nutrition, better known as the 'Food for the Future'.
In Tajikistan, the initiative 'Food for the Future' is aimed at addressing the underlying causes of malnutrition and poverty by accelerating inclusive growth in agriculture and improved nutrition of the population with particular emphasis on women and children in 12 districts of Khatlon region.
The USAID Land Reform project in Tajikistan is one of the many development programmes implemented in the country with the support of USAID. Since 1992, the American people have been provided with assistance to the sum of more than $1billion in programmes that support the development of democratic institutions, healthcare, education and economic growth in Tajikistan.