Last week Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev signed a decree approving the State Program of Socio-Economic Development of Regions of Azerbaijan for 2009-2013 in order to diversify the economy and its effective integration into the global economy, improve the level of infrastructure and public services, improve living standards.
The predecessor of this state program, covering 2004-2008 has successfully completed its terms and planned actions (successes of the country are obvious). Meanwhile, as experts consider, the state program in 2004-2008 is executed approximately for 80 percent. And all growing requirements for stable and sustained development of the country put the new aims which are built into new five- year program. Lets note one feature of state programs in Azerbaijan. Exactly those actions held in Azerbaijan on the basis of state programs, yield effective results, are accountable to the population and have presidential control. Therefore this new state program of social and economic development of regions of Azerbaijan from the moment of its signing is predicted with great success and bright finish.
Aim of the new five -year state program of development of regions of Azerbaijan is - achievement of diversification of country's economy and its effective integration into world economy system, improvement of infrastructural and utilities levels, increasing of population standards of life. The major tasks for achievement of these purposes are strengthening of development of agriculture and industry spheres, more effectively using the existing potential of regions of Azerbaijan, support of businessmen in this business, solving problem of poverty and all-around development of the country from the economic point of view.
Let's specify problems built into the state program:
· Maintenance of accelerated development of non - oil sector by an effective
utilization of natural and labour potential of the country
· Continuation of actions for infrastructure improvement
· Improvement of a business climate
· Continuation of works upon attraction of investments into the country
· Stimulation of manufacturing of export driven production
· Adminisrtation of existing infrastructure objects to world standards
and creation of an infrastructure of modern type
· Improvement of maintenance of the population by utilities
· Increase of an occupation level of the population
· Reduction of poverty level
The state program of socio- economic development of regions of Azerbaijan for 2009-2013 contains concrete plans of measures upon each region. So, the state program plan of measures consists of following points:
1. measures of republican value
2. measures in regions and settlements of Baku
3. measures in economic regions of the country
These measures will be financed by the country's public budget, non-budgetary funds, institutions, enterprises and organizations regardless their property form, National Entrepreneurship Support Fund and Azerbaijan Investment Company, local and foreign entrepreneurs, international organizations and foreign countries, as well as other sources not contradicting the legislation.
Cabinet council along with local executive powers are entrusted to take necessary measures upon maintenance of execution of the state program, together with the ministries of economic development and the finance to provide the account of measures provided in the state program by years at annual drawing of State investment program.
And now we will consider the basic actions built into the state program on development of separate sectors of economic and public life of the country and priority directions of their development.
Priorities of development of agrarian sphere of Azerbaijan till 2013
Priorities of development of agrarian sphere in Azerbaijan with 2009 for 2013 include:
· improvement of insurance mechanism in agrarian sphere for compensation of damage caused to farming producers as result of natural disaster;
· support of business in sphere of manufacture, purchase and processing of farming products
· improvement of maintenance of requirements for mineral fertilizers and pesticides, farming machinery
· support of realization of agricultural products both on internal and foreign markets
· support of development of grain manufacture sphere, wine growing, fruit growing, etc.
Priorities of development of sphere of communication and IT in Azerbaijan till 2013
Priorities for communication and information technology (IT) development were specified in Azerbaijan by 2013. It is planned to develop universal services in the regions (2009), expand applying services of Azdatakom network (2009-2012) and organize digital broadcasting in the country (2009-2012) as part of the State Program on Socio-Economic Development of Azerbaijani regions for 200-2013 which Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev approved on April 14.
Measure to improve communication in Baku comprises optimizing network of the capital city (2009-2012), reconstructing and electronizing the Automatic Telephone Exchange (ATE) to improve people's communication services in Baku and suburban settlements (2009-2012).
It is planned to reconstruct a telephone network in Sumgayit (2009-2010), reconstruct communication network in the populated areas (2009-2011) in Absheron, reconstruct central and rural ATE in line with modern technology (2010-2012) in Agdash, Bilasuvar, Goychay, Kurdamir, Neftchala, Saatli, Sabirabad, Salyan, Ujar, Zardab, Agsu, Dashkasan, Gadabay, Shamkir, Davachi, Gusar, Jalilabad, Lerik, Lankaran, Masalli, Terter and Shaki, organize universal telecommunication and post services, electronic trade through forming information-marketing points and wireless Internet (2009-2013) in Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic, as well as telephonize the populated areas (2009-2011) in Fuzuli.
Measures on tax and monetary-loan policy
This program envisages measures on tax and monetary-loan policy. As part of the program, the Ministries of Economic Development and Taxes are commissioned to take relevant measures to form fair competitive environment. It is planned to optimize tax policy and tax rates by 2013. It is also planned to create computer terminals to improve tax services rendered by entrepreneurs and expand a coverage zone.
The Central Bank and Ministries of Finance and Economic Development are commissioned to improve legislative base to expand entrepreneurs' access loan resources. Priorities also comprise development of banking, insurance and leasing services, as well as expanding banks' regional branch network.
The Central Bank together with the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology intends to form a system of post deposits and post accounts at the post network platform and specify organization-legal procedures.
Measures upon transport projects realization
According to a government program of socio- economic development of regions for 2009-2013, the Ministry of transport of Azerbaijan will complete works on creation of transport intellectual control system of Baku in 2012. Works will be held in 2010-2012 according to actions plan, provided by state program.
The intellectual system will allow the country population to lower time losses in transport, to order traffic, to unload intensity in transport system.
According to researches, as a result of introduction of similar system the quantity of traffic lights and bus stops will be rationalized. Their number was already reduced as a result of building of bridges, pedestrian crossings. System creation will allow sending of operative information about vehicles traffics, speeds, stops, transport failures, jams and other cases into the central control office.
Also Ministry of Transport within frame of state program in 2012 plans to hold actions upon development of the infrastructure, providing regulation of functioning of country automobile transport.
According to the program, in 2009-2012 Ministry of Transport will hold works upon building of new international trading port in Alyaty district. This port will be multimodal as besides the logistical centre further here in this territory is planned creation of exclusive economic zone.
Building of new international seaport in Alyaty district will be carried out in three stages and will come to the end by 2015. The first stage of the project which should capture 2008-2010, provides building of two ferry, three cargo bridges for reception of containers, vessels of type "ro-ro" and usual (universal) dry-cargo ships. The second stage of the project covers 2011-2013 and provides building of three cargo bridges, the third stage of the project (2014-2015) - building additionally two more cargo bridges. The port building project is estimated more than 400 million dollars.
In 2009-2013 will be held works on improvement of an infrastructure of the railway and reforms in this sphere will be carry out. Works in this direction are commended to Ministries of Transport, Finance and Economic development, and also to state committee of state property administrating.
Ministry of Transport of Azerbaijan within frame of the new program of socio- economic development will continue works on reconstruction and rehabilitations of the main roads. Works in this direction will capture 2009-2013.
The state program provides designing, building and reconstruction of road outcomes on roads and road crossings in Baku (in 2009-2013). During this period will be continued both works on perfection and reconstruction of internal road networks of Baku.
In 2010-2013 is planned to held works on repair, asphalt covering and buildings of sidewalks in streets of nearby to Baku settlements and villages.
Also in 2009-2013 works on development of Baku underground network according to the general plan of Baku city will be continued.
Measures upon geological exploration of oil and gas fields
Reconstruction and upgrading of oil-and-gas, transport and refining infrastructure is one of the priorities of Azerbaijan's State Program on Socio-Economic Development of Regions in 2009-2013.
The program calls for accelerating geological exploration in new oil and gas fields and preparing fields for operation.
New settlements are expected to be supplied with gas in 2009-2013.
The program plans to boost entrepreneurship in energy sphere.
The use of alternative and renewable energy sources will be promoted to ensure country's energy security.
New facilities will be launched to meet increasing demand for energy. The program also envisages continuing construction of new power stations, upgrading energy transmission lines and substations.
Scientific-research, design and survey work will be implemented to identify directions of potential of alternative and renewable energy sources under the program. The measures will be taken by the Industry and Energy Ministry.
The Energy Ministry will take measures to provide for a rational use of alternative energy sources under an action plan.
Measures upon utilities improvement
According to context of the state program, last years in Azerbaijan is observed the building boom, including inhabited objects. It demands improvement of old municipal networks, construction of new municipal infrastructure and bringing utilities to the world standards.
Primary goals in this direction include:
· carrying out reclamation and fortification works in emergency buildings;
· Acceleration of measures on utilities re-structuring;
· Restoration of existing heating system, its modernization and reconstruction;
· Gathering, transportation of domestic waste, its recycling and attraction of private
business to this sector;
· Providing of uninterrupted water supply;
· Updating of water and sewer lines in cities, regions and villages of Azerbaijan.
Measures upon protection reinforcement of main gas pipelines
Azerigaz JSC (sale and distribution of gas in Azerbaijan) will conduct operations to restore and reconstruct plants of electric chemical protection and power energy of main gas pipeline within the plan of actions of the program of social-economic development of Azerbaijani regions over 2009-2013, the state program said.
Reconstruction and construction of main gas pipelines will continue over 2010-2013.
The state program also envisages improvement of gas supply in regions and new inhabited settlements.
New power stations are planned to be constructed within the program to increase energy supply in the country. Azerenergy (the biggest energy producer in Azerbaijan) is charged with this work.
Azerenergy is charged with reduction of fuel use during energy production, restoration of distributive lines, as well as increase collection of fees among consumers in 2010-2012.
Within the program Baku electric shebeke JSC is charged with restoration and reconstruction of distributive lines, liquidate losses and illegal interferences using power energy, as well as increase collection of fees among consumers for used power energy to improve power supply in Baku, adjacent inhabited settlements and villages.
Operations are planned to be held during 2010-2013.
Azerigaz JSC is charged with improving of gas supply for Baku's consumers, adjacent inhabited settlements and villages and increasing collection of fees among consumers for used gas. Reconstruction of gas distributive lines are planned to be held in 2009-2012.
Boilers, all adjacent inhabited settlements and villages of Baku are planned to be restored in this period. Azeristiliktejizad JSC will conduct operations.
Measures upon employment in the country
For achievement of full employment of citizens of Azerbaijan and creation worthy working conditions it is necessary to solve following problems:
· Creation of favorable conditions for business development, in particular small and medium business
· Support of investment activity for development of the enterprise environment
· Strengthening of social protection of the unemployed and persons looking for a job;
· Legalisation of informal employment;
· To achieve dynamic balance of supply and demand on labour- market;
· Bringing the system of preparation and retraining of personnel to world standards.
Because of growth of labour migrants in Azerbaijan in the state program are specified decisions of below-mentioned problems:
- Effective utilisation of migratory processes for country development;
- Realisation of migratory programs and measures with a glance to country interests;
- Creation of conditions for adaptation of migrants to existing social and economic situation in the country;
- Protection of the rights of migrants;
- Prevention of illegal migration.
Measures upon entrepreneurship development
As told above, for increase of employment of population and unemployment reduction there is a necessity in the push for development of entrepreneurship activity. And for implementation of this condition the solving of following problems has to be carried out:
· Strengthening role of small and medium business (SMB) in the country for growth of export potential and solving of social problems of society, acceleration of process of its integration into world economic;
· Optimization of sector, regional and technological structure of enterprise activity;
· Cooperation strengthening between large, medium and small enterprises, including expansion of industrial-cooperation communications;
· For support of businessmen - creation of structures for granting of recommendatory services, informal supply, marketing services, creation of modern organizational models in the country, etc.;
· Carrying out trade fairs;
· Elimination of various barriers in realization of enterprise activity
Measures upon reinforcement of country export potential
Code of measures for this direction include:
· Increase variety of exported goods and export stimulation in private sector
· Strengthening positions of domestic exporters on foreign markets, protection of their interests;
· Compliance with rendered pay services to the world standards and carrying out measures upon internal market protection according to WTO principles;
· Elimination of unfair competition;
· Strengthening measures for improvement of quality and production protection.
Industry improvement measures
Plan of measures upon strengthening of industrial sphere of the country include:
· Definition of direction of non-oil industry sectors development
· Encouragement of manufacturing of competitive and export driven industry
· Improvement and privatization of state industrial enterprises
· Technological and personnel updating of the industry;
So, measures plan of state program of socio- economic development of regions of Azerbaijan in 2009-2013 stipulates complete privatization of all large enterprises of Baku till 2014.
According to the program, till 2014 is planned complete privatization of large industrial enterprises opened to privatization in Baku and nearby settlements, the execution commended to State committee of state property administering.
Also in capital there will be continued support of the enterprises in sphere of light and food industries and in expansion sphere of building materials manufacture.
Measures plan of republican value provides an acceleration of privatization process of enterprises opened to privatization, change of pattern of ownership of medium and large enterprises into joint-stock companies and sale of their actions till 2014.
In 2008 in Azerbaijan was privatized 1800 small state enterprises and objects, and on the basis of medium and large state enterprises there were created ten joint-stock companies.
Measures upon improvement of melioration and irrigation till 2014
The state program also includes measures to improve the land-reclamation and irrigation until 2014. The program envisages the improvement of water resources of 2010.
The program also includes remedial work to improve water supply in winter pastures, creation of water bodies in water protection zones and strengthen the supervision in 2009-2013.
The measures to improve the structure of research and design institutes in the field of reclamation and water management, as well as the establishment of a single institution and strengthening material-technical base will be started in 2010.
The Azersu joint stock company was instructed to improve the water supply system and sewerage services in Baku in 2010-2013.
The improvement of sewerage and water supply systems in Baku, as well as reconstruction of existing water tank and construction of new water tanks will be implemented in 2009-2013.
Measures upon social security of population
As well as in the previous state program on socio- economic development of regions, for forthcoming years the main objective of Azerbaijan government is improvement of vital indicators of the population and reduction level of poverty.
Measures upon strengthening of social protection of the population include:
· Continuous improvement of addressed social help for lower-income population;
· Solving housing problem of population, especially for young families at the expense of social mortgage;
· Improvement of living conditions of invalids of the Karabakh war and families-shahids;
· Strengthening social protection of children and mothers, creation specialized centers for them;
· Improving health of population by improving quality of food products, prevention spreading of virus diseases;
· Improvement of reproductive health and development services on family planning.
Besides the above-stated actions of economic character, the state program on development of regions for next five years includes measures upon environment protection, development of tourism, educational sphere, public health services, scientific activity, sports and culture. The accelerated development of these spheres play important role in formation of steady stable Azerbaijan.