Largest social reform in CIS history
Economy17 January 2020, 16:10 223
Azerbaijan allocates 2.3 billion to fund social packages, which cover 4.2 million citizens
At the meeting chaired by President Ilham Aliyev, the results of 2019 were analyzed in detail and achievements in economic, political, and social spheres were highlighted. During the meeting, it was noted that last year, in-depth reforms were implemented in the social sphere, and significant measures were taken to increase the daily incomes of 42% of the population and their welfare. It was noted that as a result of these reforms the salary of 1 million 350 thousand people increased significantly. Thus, Azerbaijan ranked second in the CIS in terms of the purchasing power of the minimum wage. In 2019, 153,000 new labor contracts were registered in the country. Last year, 10 thousand 354 citizens were involved in the self-employment program. There was very serious growth, a 70 percent increase, in the targeted social assistance program, which covers 72,000 families. One of the most important social security initiatives last year was the payment of 11,000 manats to the families of martyrs. This program was implemented by 98%. In 2018, 628 apartments were provided to martyr families and those disabled in the Karabakh war, while in 2019, 934 apartments were provided to people of this category. At the same time, 600 cars were provided to persons with disabilities.
Improving the welfare of citizens
As seen from the facts listed above the largest social package in the history of modern Azerbaijan and the CIS was implemented last year. When repaying the deposits that were left over from the Soviet era and were in some way frozen, the Azerbaijani state also returned these deposits on the basis of the principle most acceptable to citizens and with the most acceptable coefficient, thus becoming first in the CIS in this area as well. The social package implemented last year covered 4.2 million people and the material situation of the Azerbaijani people improved. The minimum wage doubled, the minimum pension increased by 70 percent, some benefits by 50 percent. A lot of work was done in relation to social infrastructure. Sixty medical institutions and 84 schools were built and renovated. Last year, the state provided apartments to more than 900 martyr families in excess of the plan. This year, there are plans to provide at least 1,500 apartments and private houses to families of martyrs and Karabakh war veterans. These positive developments taking place in the social sphere improve the well-being of citizens and with no doubt will remain a priority in 2020.
Azerbaijani citizens are in the focus of social policy
As noted at the meeting chaired by President Ilham Aliyev, a large social package was implemented in Azerbaijan in 2019, Azerbaijani MP, member of Committee on Economic Policy, Industry and Entrepreneurship of Milli Majlis Aydin Huseynov told the Kaspi newspaper. Huseynov noted that 2.3 billion was allocated to fund these measures, which cover 4.2 million of our citizens. This includes doubling the minimum wage, increasing pensions by more than 70 percent, and addressing the problem of bad loans, as well as the compensation of damage caused to the citizens in the areas of natural disasters and the resolution of their housing problems. In addition, after the fire in the shopping center, the state supported its citizens. Although people had no insurance coverage for their homes that were destroyed or damaged as a result of natural disasters, as well as those involved in entrepreneurial activities in the mentioned shopping center, during these times, as always, the government was with its citizens and supported them. Of course, all of these prove that the Azerbaijani citizen is in the focus of the social policy implemented in the country. The payments made to families of martyrs, the apartments and cars provided to the families of martyrs and Karabakh veterans, persons with disabilities are also examples of this. Certainly, these events are of a continuous nature and we will continue this year as well. 2.8 billion manats in the state budget of 2020 is planned for social projects,” he said.
The way of dynamic development
Pro-rector of Ganja State University, MP Parvin Kerimzade noted that Azerbaijan signed the largest social package in CIS history. She said that independent Azerbaijan, which was saved by the great leader Heydar Aliyev from chaos, anarchy, and the threat of losing its statehood, is developing rapidly in stable conditions today. According to the MP, as a result of the purposeful socio-economic policy led by President Ilham Aliyev, Azerbaijan has become the fastest-growing, modernizing, and democratizing state in the world. "As a result of successful governance, our country has made significant strides towards dynamic development, significantly enhancing its position in the international arena and conquering peaks that any independent state would envy. Reforms aimed at improving the interests and rights of Azerbaijani citizens, and the unprecedented successes in the energy, transport, and foreign policy have complemented each other and created harmony in the sustainable development of the state. Today Azerbaijan ranks 2nd place among the CIS countries for minimum wage rates, taking into account the purchasing power parity. In comparison with neighboring countries, this indicator is 2.1 times higher than in Armenia, 1.6 times higher than in Kazakhstan, 1.4 times more than in Georgia and Russia. This, in turn, indicates that the domestic purchasing power and the citizens' welfare is higher in Azerbaijan than that of other countries,” she said.
The people’s expectations from the state
MP Kerimzade noted that the year 2019 was marked by significant changes in the political, economic and social life of Azerbaijan, which is living in its renaissance period. "Large-scale landscaping is underway in all regions of the country, roads, bridges are built, international projects are implemented, and, most importantly, the population’s welfare is improving day by day. The successes and economic development give us a basis to say that the dreams of great leader Heydar Aliyev, who wanted to see Azerbaijan as a developed country, have been fulfilled. As a result of the hard work of President Ilham Aliyev, many laws were adopted in the social sphere, decrees and orders were signed, and important measures were taken to strengthen the social protection of the population. Last year, a large social package was presented to IDPs, families of martyrs, war veterans, and the disabled persons. More than 5,000 homes and apartments were built in 2019 for IDPs alone. The government took responsibility to meet the financial losses of individuals who had foreign currency loans and fully met our citizens' expectations. This decision, regardless of their position, has raised the spirits of every Azerbaijani citizen and has increased their confidence and trust in the state and statehood. There are many examples in our country that show that the purposeful policy fully reflects the interests of the people. Every step taken by Azerbaijan, which has proven itself as a social state in the world, the decrees and orders signed always show that the state is the guarantor of the high welfare of its citizens. We are confident that projects that will improve the welfare of the population will continue to be sustainable,” she added.
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