• KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%

Viewing results 1 - 6 of 23

Central Asia: Poverty continues to decline, but pace of poverty reduction is slowing — WB

BISHKEK (TCA) — Although poverty rates in Central Asia continue to decline overall, the pace of poverty reduction is slowing, according to new data released by the World Bank. High levels of poverty remain in pockets of rural and remote areas, which also suffer from lack of employment opportunities, say new Poverty Outlooks for Central Asian countries, released ahead of International Day for the Eradication of Poverty on October 17. Continue reading

Kyrgyzstan: Tax revenues declining, unemployment and poverty persist

BISHKEK (TCA) — Kyrgyzstan has ensured macroeconomic and social stability and achieved GDP growth in the first four months of 2019, the Kyrgyz Economy Ministry reported. The GDP growth was 5.3%, and excluding enterprises developing the Kumtor gold field — 1.4%. Continue reading

Uzbekistan: Lawmakers criminalize begging

TASHKENT (TCA) — Uzbekistan’s Senate has approved a law that criminalizes begging in public places across the country, RFE/RL's Uzbek Service reports. Continue reading

Kyrgyzstan: growing poverty and poor state budget

BISHKEK (TCA) — The Kyrgyz Government has recently put forward several initiatives aimed at replenishing the state budget at the expense of ordinary citizens. The Government offered to raise the tariffs for cold water and fines for violation of traffic rules, as well as to introduce mandatory paid registration of mobile phones. These suggestions caused a negative reaction of the society. Earlier, the Government appealed to citizens asking them to help pay the country's foreign debt. The total amount of Kyrgyzstan’s external debt amounted to $4.8 billion, or 53.9% of GDP at the end of 2017. Low living standards According to various international ratings, Kyrgyzstan has extremely low living standards of the population. Scanty budgetary expenditures on education, healthcare and social payments do not cover the real needs of citizens, and on average, every fourth Kyrgyz lives below the poverty line. In Kyrgyzstan, there are the lowest average wage ($216.3) and the highest outflow of labor migrants among the Eurasian Economic Union member countries. According to the Russian National Research University at Higher School of Economics, only Tajikistan has the worse situation with $137 wages while it is $670.9 in Russia followed by Kazakhstan ($459.1), Belarus ($421.9) and Armenia ($363.1). According to the Focus Economics Group’s rating of 127 countries based on GDP for 2018, Kyrgyzstan is among the ten poorest countries in the world. Kyrgyzstan’s GDP per capita was $1,081 in 2016, projected at $1,222 in 2018 and at $1,446 in 2022. “Having experienced considerable political and social instability with weak governance and high corruption since gaining independence in 1991, the country’s current democracy is a far cry from those days. Nonetheless corruption is still pervasive in the public sector, which constrains the country’s economic growth potential. The Kyrgyz economy is also vulnerable to external shocks due to its overreliance on its massive gold mine, Kumtor, which accounts for about 10% of GDP, as well as remittances, which amount to about 30% of GDP,” Focus Economics Consensus Forecast panelists say. Number of poor growing The number of citizens living below the poverty line has increased in Kyrgyzstan. According to the National Statistical Committee, the share of low-income citizens increased from 25.4% to 25.6% over the past year. The total number of the poor reached 1.6 million, 40 thousand people more than in 2016. That especially affected the population of the southern regions of the country. In the Batken province, the poverty level increased from 37% to 40.5%, and in Osh, the second largest city of the country, from 24.6% to 33.5%. Some experts do not believe official poverty statistics because poverty is underestimated. Last year, the poverty level was 2,674 soms per month per person, which is almost half of the subsistence minimum (4,900 soms). The extreme poverty line was even lower – 1,456 soms per month ($1 now costs 68 soms). The calculation of the poverty level is based on a methodology that is beneficial to the state, and does not give a real picture, experts say. In...

Afghanistan: president calls the country’s poverty rate ‘shameful’

KABUL (TCA) — Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani on May 7 described the country’s current poverty rate as shameful, saying when poverty rises above 50 percent, it threatens the social stability of a country, TOLOnews reported. Continue reading

Can state benefit payments reduce poverty in Kyrgyzstan?

BISHKEK (TCA) — According to the Ministry of Labor and Social Development of Kyrgyzstan, 360.2 thousand people from low-income families receive monthly state benefit payments, and most of those families have children (275.9 thousand). The number of applicants for state benefits grows by 2% a year. In 2018, the State will allocate 5.330 billion soms from its budget for this purpose, which is 1.8 billion soms more than in 2017. The criteria for determining the family’s poverty are being revised now. "Ownership of a car or a tractor, a land plot that generates income, as well as a livestock is now taken into account," Labor and Social Development Minister Taalaykul Isakunova said on March 2 at a Parliament’s meeting to discuss the implementation of legislation on state benefits. Meanwhile, the minister is not sure that these benefits are effective and help people get out of poverty. “No studies have been conducted on this issue. As for me, I believe this does not help," the minister said. In Kyrgyzstan, 271,000 families live below the subsistence minimum, which is 4,900 soms ($72) per person per month, MP Ruslan Kazakbaev said. According to him, 120 thousand families spend less than $1 a day. "In rural areas, one-day expenditures of one family do not reach even one dollar,” he said. The implementation of the law "On State Benefit Payments" adopted in 2017 has many shortcomings, Kazakbaev added. "About 7-8 billion soms is necessary to implement the law but there are no sources of financing," he said. "According to the International Labor Organization, about 580,000 children work in Kyrgyzstan, and 13% of children receive state benefits, while 27% do not receive this support from the state," the MP said. He stressed the importance of increasing benefits to families in real need, and families with children with disabilities. Poverty still high According to World Bank experts, poverty is decreasing in Kyrgyzstan. Nevertheless, about 1.6 million of the country’s six million population lives below the poverty line defined at 31,151 soms per capita per year. The extreme poverty is still high, 0.8% of the population. Eight out of ten people living below the poverty line live in rural areas. Households that are large with young children have a much higher probability of living below the poverty line. Agriculture and services are still the main sectors of the economy in terms of employment. A third of the population and about 36% of those among the poorest persons works in the agricultural sector. Labor incomes per capita have increased, which together with the increased remittances allowed raising welfare and reducing poverty. Yet these remittances were mostly used to increase private consumption and the construction of housing rather than investment in the economy. Significant territorial differences affected the poverty reduction, which fell significantly in Bishkek and Jalal-Abad cities due to significant economic growth and a more active trade development. According to the WB forecast, poverty reduction is expected this year. A modest increase in agricultural and construction growth forecasts and...

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