In Uzbekistan, 75% percent of low income families do not receive social allowances

Tashkent, Uzbekistan ( -- Representatives of the governmental and non-governmental organizations, research and financial institutions participated in the workshop ‘Uzbekistan Social Protection System Assessment’. It was organized by the Ministry of Employment and Labor Relations, UNICEF, the World Bank, and International Labor Organization.

The workshop was dedicated to validating the preliminary results of an assessment of the social protection system in Uzbekistan done by the three international organizations at the request of the Government. The assessment maps the legislative and institutional frameworks, design and delivery mechanisms for social protection programmes to develop recommendations to improve the social protection system design and performance in the country.

In Uzbekistan, social protection system remains fragmented, which leads to inefficiencies of social protection investments as well as low quality of social services. The participants stressed that the need for national Social Protection Strategy and creation of a single body responsible for social protection sector would improve effectiveness of the sector and enhance coordination between different social programmes and ensure access to social services for vulnerable groups of population.

“Uzbekistan has a strong history of social protection of the population by the Government, as well as by the communities themselves. Yet, in the recent years the system became fragmented leading to inefficiencies and gaps in coverage and quality of services,” said Yulia Oleinik, Chief of Social Policy, UNICEF Uzbekistan. “The social protection system reform must be prioritized to ensure the most vulnerable population is well protected against the risks and shocks,” she added.

About 10% of Gross Domestic Product or GDP in Uzbekistan is allocated to social security and payments, which is a good indicator as per international practices. About 60 percent of the state budget is spent for social expenditures. However, the effectiveness of the investments in social protection system must be improved. Children, people with disabilities, people in the informal sector are not sufficiently supported by the existing system. 75% of low income families do not receive social allowances, according to the nationwide household survey conducted in July 2018. Social work necessary for comprehensive support to families and lifting families out of low income status is not established as a function within the Government.

UNICEF works closely with the Government of Uzbekistan to improve social protection system in the country and supports implementation of the current reforms to leave no one behind.

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