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Assessment of Intergovernmental Relations and Local Governance in the Republic of Uzbekistan

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Document date: February 01, 2004
Released online: February 01, 2004

The nonpartisan Urban Institute publishes studies, reports, and books on timely topics worthy of public consideration. The views expressed are those of the authors and should not be attributed to the Urban Institute, its trustees, or its funders.

Note: This report is available in its entirety in the Portable Document Format (PDF).


I. INTRODUCTION AND SUMMARY

Assessment Scope and Purpose

This assessment addresses the basic legal institutional framework for sub national government in Uzbekistan. It also describes how the central and respective local government tiers interact in practice and, how, at the municipal level, government is organized and operates, most importantly in respect to budgeting and the delivery of basic urban services. The assessment has been prepared as part of USAID's Local Government Initiative-Phase II (LGI-II), which operates in four of the five Central Asian Republics, or CAR (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan), and which is now in the second year of its two-year term. In the other three republics, LGI-II addresses a relatively broad agenda aimed at advancing a legal framework for decentralization and at municipal capacity building. In Uzbekistan, the program focuses more narrowly on the strengthening of housing associations (TSJs), which USAID identified as the most promising initial window for demonstrating concepts of community-based governance and transparency in this highly centralized political culture.

The scope of work for LGI-II called for this assessment during the second program year, "in order to prepare for the possible expansion of the program activities into the area of local government training and technical assistance..." The study's primary purpose is to provide background and analysis on existing realities in Uzbekistan as input into USAID's thinking in respect to the timeliness of such assistance, not to contribute directly to the design of any such assistance itself. The authors hope that the report will also serve as an informational resource for other parties interested in improving the effectiveness and responsiveness of local government in Uzbekistan. Although the assessment does contain findings on specific weaknesses in the current legal framework, institutional arrangements, and governmental practices, it does not aspire to develop comprehensive and detailed recommendations for reform.

For the purposes of researching local government organization and operations in practice, members of the study team met with informed national level observers (both inside and outside government) and, in the field, with counterparts in the city of Olmaliq (Tashkent Province) and in three LGUs in Andijon Province: the city of Andijon, the district of Xo'jaobod, and the district of Buloqbashi. Interviews were also administered in Qirg'uli (Fergana Province) and Samarqand City. Budgetary and financial information was collected during these field trips to provide illustrative, city-specific data in more detail than was available from central government sources in comparative form for all localities. The choice of LGUs for fieldwork was made, in part, to include at least one from a poorer province (Andijon) heavily dependent on transfers from the center and one from a province (Tashkent) that serves as a net donor of tax revenues to other provinces. Given the limited number of jurisdictions visited, this assessment may not capture variations that may occur in practice from one region of the country to another.


Note: This report is available in its entirety in the Portable Document Format (PDF).



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