Officials slammed for insufficient efforts to enhance public-private partnerships

President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev has been presented demonstration reports on the state of public-private partnership in the fields of energy, transport, public utilities and healthcare.

In order to reduce the burden on the national budget and attract the private sector to major projects, the Public-Private Partnership Agency was set up in 2018, a law and more than 10 resolutions were adopted.

Despite this, as few as nine considerable public-private partnership projects have been signed to date in the fields of energy, healthcare and public utilities. This is a rather miserable figure, the head of state complained.

The President requested that public-private partnership be introduced into the system of electricity and natural gas supply to consumers. Shavkat Mirziyoyev noted that this is the only way to cut costs and losses, by ensuring competition among manufacturers and suppliers.

Task has been set to accelerate the $ 270m-worth 14 public-private partnership projects in healthcare.

Tenders are to be completed within two months for the establishment of hemodialysis centers in Karakalpakstan, Khorezm and Tashkent. That would grant access to this type of assistance for 1,100 citizens a year, as well as ease the burden on the budget, from which 100 billion soums will be allocated annually for hemodialysis.

In excess of 20,000 cancer patients are registered in our country every year. The head of our state instructed the officials in charge to create two centers of radiation therapy on the basis of public-private partnership by the end of this year. In addition, project documentation will be developed for the creation of a multidisciplinary clinical hospital for a thousand beds in the city of Nurafshan (administrative center of Tashkent region) on the basis of the principle “construction – management – commissioning”.

During the consideration of public-private partnerships in the field of transport and logistics, Shavkat Mirziyoyev pointed to an absolutely substandard work on this front.

It was indicated that the further development of the sphere would require $ 27 billion.

For example, today the journey from Tashkent to Andijan takes about 5-6 hours through the Kamchik Pass that passes 22 thousand vehicles. In the next 5 years, this figure is expected to reach 40 thousand. With the launch of the Tashkent-Andijan toll road, the distance would be abridged to 3 hours, and the throughput would grow by 70 percent.

In this regard, the head of state stressed the importance of developing design documentation and announcing a bid for the construction of a new tunnel through the Kamchik Pass.

According to international expert analyses, the modernization of existing airports in Uzbekistan will require an average of $ 800 million. To this end, the President urged the executives to devise, jointly with the World Bank, a technical task for transferring the airports of Tashkent, Bukhara, Ferghana and Urgench to management on a “package principle” (when unprofitable airports are transferred together with profitable ones).

The meeting agenda also included projects in the field of public utilities. Shavkat Mirziyoyev noted that the industry has barely undergone any positive change.

Currently, the task is to build and modernize the sewerage system in 31 big and medium-sized cities, 156 district centers. Sewerage availability makes 45 percent in Karshi, 37 percent in Andijan, 30 in Nukus, and 10 percent in Namangan.

Funds from international financial institutions in the amount of $ 912 million have been attracted for as few as 18 big and medium-sized cities. All sewage construction projects will require $ 2.6 billion. Public-private partnerships for urban sewerage will ease the budget burden and improve service quality.

In addition, the President gave directive to work out a PPP model in heat supply on the example of the cities of Bukhara, Namangan and Nukus.

Deputy Prime Ministers Jamshid Kuchkarov and Sardor Umurzakov were instructed to quarterly discuss the implementation of all public-private partnership projects and determine required measures.

At the end of the presentation held in a critical spirit, the responsible officials were given specific directives on how to organize the work.

The President emphasized that issues related to public-private partnership will henceforth be under his personal control.

It was determined that in the near future the executives in charge will report to the head of state on the results of the work carried out on this front.


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