15 November 2019

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18 Sep  2019 186

The program to improve social protection in the country have been launched

In partnership with Government, the UN team in Uzbekistan has developed a joint programme on social protection which prioritizes institutional reform and will ensure pilot programmes benefitting people with disabilities.

Photo UNICEF

These issues were discussed at the meeting on social security in the country under the chairmanship of Deputy Prime Minister of Uzbekistan Aziz Abduhakimova and permanent United Nations coordinator in Uzbekistan Helen Fraser. The event was also attended by MPs, representatives of ministries and UN agencies, including UNICEF, UNDP and the ILO.

In Uzbekistan, social protection functions are currently distributed across multiple ministries and agencies, and although Uzbekistan has invested about 8-9% of its GDP in social protection and committed to SDG targets on social protection, gaps in the system have been growing in recent years. Most people with disabilities are not adequately covered by social protection. Social allowances have decreased considerably with two-thirds of eligible low-income families with children not receiving any support. Only 10% of eligible people have access to social allowances and active labour market programmes, and 30% of persons of pensionable age have no access to income security.

“Despite good initial efforts by countries to nationalize the SDGs by identifying priorities in domestic contexts, it is widely acknowledged that the ambition of Agenda 2030 requires a rapid acceleration of efforts and results.  This means getting the right economic, social and environmental policies in place and taking them to scale as quickly as possible,” said Helena Fraser, United Nations Resident Coordinator in Uzbekistan. “Here in Uzbekistan, we believe investing in a robust, coherent social protection system that draws on best global standards and experience will help Uzbekistan’s ambitious national development agenda to succeed while protecting the most vulnerable.”

“The lack of integration at policy and institutional levels is a root cause of ineffectiveness and inefficiencies. This means that social protection cannot be effectively provided to any group,” said Sascha Graumann, Representative, UNICEF. He added that “in practice, this means that people in need cannot obtain the services or support they are entitled to and don’t even know where to turn to secure their entitlements. Creation of a single body would enable an integrated approach to address the needs of individuals, families and children.”

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