(Turkmenistan.ru) Issues related to the adoption of the state budget for 2007 and basic parameters of the social economic and cultural development of Turkmenistan were discussed at an expanded session of the Cabinet of Ministers yesterday.
The head of state Saparmurat Niyazov reported that in general all sectors of the national economy performed good in the outgoing year. He particularly noted the oil and gas sector that ensured the bulk of foreign currency earnings for the state budget. According to the president, this year the total amount of foreign currency earnings increased significantly due to the rise in export prices for Turkmen gas and oil, reports Trend.
According the head of state, in 2007, the per capita income will amount to US $ 9050. The expenses for free use of gas, electricity, water and salt by the population will rise by 5.2%. More funds will be allocated for further development of social and cultural spheres, including healthcare, education, book printing and etc. In particular, 120 thousand new computers will be purchased for the secondary schools of Turkmenistan.
Saparmurat Niyazov drew the meeting's attention to the need of drastic agriculture reforms and said the reform of the Agriculture Joint-Stock Company of Turkmenistan would be conducted soon. The reform will focus on the provincial structures of the AJSC. Provincial governors will head these structures on an experimental basis. If it works well for 2-3 years, this mechanism will be legitimated in the established manner. Besides, the provincial administrations will enlarge the agriculture departments that would deal with daily monitoring and control of the production process on the ground. The head of state relieved Sherip Tajov of his post of the chairman of the Agriculture Joint-Stock Company of Turkmenistan for failing his duties.
Touching on the issue of grain production, the president seriously criticized heads of the agriculture sector, provinces and management of Turkmenobahyzmat association. The head of state pointed to low skills of machine operators, neglectful treatment of expensive agriculture equipment and violation of operation rules. At the same time, Saparmurat Niyazov said that administration staff of the association is very excessive. He noted that this is also true as regards other big agriculture structures. The president demanded that the order should be restored there.
Speaking about live stock breeding, Saparmurat Niyazov set the task of increasing the small cattle stock to 21 million heads. The 21.5% growth in food industry should be also ensured with a view to strengthening food independence, the head of state noted.
The president deems it necessary to create agriculture departments at the district administrations too. All these measures are designed to solve the important task which is to ensure high living standards in Turkmenistan's villages, Saparmurat Niyazov said. The state spares no funds to create optimality conditions for farmers to achieve high productivity of work. 50% benefits enjoyed by tenants for a number of years remain in force. However, stronger efforts are needed to make agriculture work in accordance with market economy rules.
Touching on the problem of construction of modern high ways in the country, Saparmurat Niyazov sharply criticized the minister of motor transport and roads of Turkmenistan Baymuhammet Kelov for failing to complete in time the construction of the strategically important highway Ashgabat-Dashoguz. 245 km of 540 km have been constructed. The head of state relieved Kelov of his duties for grave shortcomings in work and for filing inflated reports about road construction progress and for embezzlement of state resources in large amounts. He instructed law-enforcement organizations to investigate the matter.
The head of Mary province construction department Ashyrgeldy Zamanov is appointed minister of motor transport and roads of Turkmenistan for a six-month probationary period. Instructing the newly appointed minister, the president tasked him to complete the construction of the Ashgabat-Dashoguz and Ashgabat-Mary highways in two years.
The president of Turkmenistan also looked into other staff issues. In particular, Ovezdurdy Begenjov was appointed deputy chairman of the state raw materials and commodity exchange of Turkmenistan. Rector of the International Turkmen-Turkish University Chary Komekov was fired for serious shortcomings in work. Minister of education of Turkmenistan Semshat Annagylyjova was appointed new rector.
Summing up the discussions on the prospects of further development of Turkmenistan, Saparmurat Niyazov emphasized that Turkmenistan has great potential. The head of state cited as an example the discovery of a big gas deposit in Yolatan district. According to estimates, GDP growth in Turkmenistan should total no less than 21.5-22% by 2007.