PERFORMANCE REPORT HIGHLIGHTS: TAJIKISTANFY 2008 Foreign Assistance Goals
Tajikistan is the poorest of the former Soviet states and is struggling to emerge from poverty, years of civil war, and the impact of last year’s disastrous winter. Despite these challenges, Tajikistan could play a vital role in regional trade, energy, and security networks. In the area of peace and security, United States Government (USG) objectives in FY 2008 were to reduce the risk of WMD proliferation as well as build the capacity of Tajik law enforcement and security personnel in order to maintain peace and build stability in Central Area. USG assistance objectives in democracy building were to promote rule of law by supporting reforms, fostering local community development and better local management, and increasing democratic participation by assisting Tajik civil society organizations. In the area of health, education, and helping the most vulnerable, assistance was designed to improve service delivery, combat diseases such as tuberculosis, malaria, AIDS/HIV, and improve maternal and child health, in addition to providing medical and humanitarian supplies. In economic development, USG assistance objectives were to promote sound economic policies and increase the capacity in the Ministry of Finance, improve trade and investment, encourage the development of a modern banking sector, help modernize the energy grid, and develop a better business environment by promoting “one-stop” business registration and other reforms. One of the biggest efforts in FY 2008 was to improve food security by expanding agricultural productivity and land reform.
Total FY 2008 Foreign Operations Appropriated Assistance: $30.92m*
|FY 2008 Areas of Focus|
P&S: Peace and Security
GJD: Governing Justly and Democratically
IIP: Investing in People
EG: Economic Growth
HA: Humanitarian Assistance
XCPS: Cross-Cutting Program Support
(*Foreign Operations appropriated assistance, excluding centrally managed Foreign Operations funds that are not budgeted for specific countries. HA total does not include the value of donated humanitarian commodities transported by the Department of State, estimated at $32.26 million in FY 2008.)
Highlights of FY 2008 Performance by Area of Focus
Peace and Security
In FY 2008, USG assistance:
- Provided nine courses on anti-terrorism to 185 Tajik police and security professionals. These courses focused on police management, explosive ordnance disposal, and crisis response. Each course was delivered with a “train the trainer” element to support sustainability.
- Resulted in the opening of a Border Guard Regional Training Center, renovating the Border Guard Academy, and the provision of training on drug and precursor chemicals control, operational/intelligence analysis, and enhanced search and inspection techniques for drugs and precursor chemicals. Four groups of 15 Border Guard students were trained. USG assistance was provided for communications, operations, and maintenance support to new mobile teams at the Ministry of Internal Affairs. This resulted in the unilateral seizure of 81.9 kilograms of drugs and the detention of ten drug smugglers, as well as joint seizure of an additional 91.4 kilograms of drugs. Three outposts on the Afghan border were also renovated.
- Successfully graduated four students from U.S. military training institutions. To address the lack of English language capacity in the armed forces, assistance funds were used to conduct an English language mobile training course in Tajikistan. The four-month course provided instruction to 30 Tajikistani officers of whom nine are already participating or will participate in training courses next year.
- Provided 15,000 battle dress uniforms to the Ministry of Defense.
- Reconstructed two additional floors of the police academy and began the construction of a floor of the Academy for the Committee for National Security in order to create an analytical center. The Tajik Drug Control Agency (DCA) Mobile Unit task force has improved its working methodologies and field performance. Its drug liaison officers based in Fayzabad, Taloqan, Kunduz, and Mazar-e-Sharif in Afghanistan have received intelligence training. To facilitate exchange of classified information between offices and DCA Headquarter in Dushanbe, an encrypted program was installed in each office’s computer system. As a direct result, in the first nine months of the year, DCA officers single-handedly seized over 1,152 kilograms of drugs, a 25.6 percent increase over the comparable period of 2007.
- Trained four prosecutors in combating trafficking in persons through a study tour to the United States. Over the course of FY 2008, 60 victims of trafficking were returned from destination countries (UAE, Russian Federation, Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Turkey, and Afghanistan). They included victims of both sexual and labor exploitation. All 60 received psychological, medical, legal, and social assistance in the USG-supported shelter. Two USG-supported hotlines received 783 calls and provided information to returned victims searching for help. In August 2008, a Joint Action Plan was signed with the Inter-Ministerial Commission on Combating Trafficking in Persons to establish regional and international cooperation with countries of destination and transit, further develop legislation, improve communication between members of the commission, provide assistance to victims, and strengthen cooperation with the Government. The Tajik Parliament adopted new amendments to the Criminal Code based on the Palermo Protocol definition of human trafficking.
- Reduced proliferation threats through cooperative engagement of scientists, technicians, and engineers with WMD and applicable expertise through USG assistance to the International Science and Technology Center (ISTC).
Governing Justly and Democratically
In FY 2008, USG assistance:
- Provided four training sessions to 75 medical and social work professionals on legal issues involving human trafficking cases.
- Established three computer research centers allowing defense advocates access to a database of Tajik law. A legal research assistant for each center was hired to answer inquiries from advocates around the country and to assist the users of the centers to conduct computer assisted legal research on-site. Within the first month of operation, the assistants provided 128 consultations.
- Developed materials and taught pilot courses at the Islamic University on a variety of topics including human rights and the law, and the intersection of the law and Islam. Additionally, seven law professors were trained on the use of interactive teaching methods, and 22 instructors from various disciplines from the Islamic University attended training on the use of interactive teaching methods to encourage critical thinking.
- Increased and strengthened the participation of citizens in local government decision-making processes. During the reporting period, seven training programs were conducted for 152 local government officials and local council members on topics such as budgetary process and review, and organizing public hearings. As a result, 2,730 citizens utilized the services of USG-supported information centers, local governments organized 27 public hearings, and 24 public information boards were installed and used to provide information and announcements of forthcoming education and cultural programs.
- Provided assistance to nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) that were required by a new law to re-register. USG assistance facilitated the process by preparing a step-by-step manual to assist organizations in registration and distributed it to hundreds of organizations. In regions outside of Dushanbe that lacked e-mail or effective postage, USG assistance funded seminars on such topics as NGO creation, registration, taxation, and finance. As a result of this work 1,800 NGOs out of approximately 3,200 were able to re-register last year.
- Supported satellite broadcasting of Central Asian-related social, political, and documentary programming for private television stations and viewers. In 2008, eight television companies in Tajikistan received the signal and rebroadcast over five programs per day, totaling nearly 30 hours per month of additional content; the satellite feed is also available to any citizen with a home satellite receiver.
- Sponsored more than 30 visitors to meet with the Tajik public at American Corners and local universities, to speak on subjects such as human rights, ethnic diversity, press freedom, religious pluralism, domestic violence, and international law enforcement cooperation. Two Tajik television crews traveled to the United States to film documentaries about effective police-public relations and immigration and ethnic diversity. The Embassy also provided scholarships for Tajik students to enroll in the internationally accredited University of Central Asia, with the ultimate goal of educating future political, business, and civic leaders and sharing with them internationally accepted democratic standards.
Investing in People
In FY 2008, USG assistance:
- Supported two new Centers of Excellence, which combine service delivery and medical education to support health workers serving remote, rural areas. The government of Tajikistan took ownership of the model and is disseminating it, and other donors are replicating the model for centers in new locations.
- Promoted efforts to institutionalize family medicine through the participation of ten doctors in an eleven-month Family Medicine Training of Trainers program, and the graduation of 62 doctors from the six-month family doctor retraining program. An additional 500 medical workers benefited from continuing medical education modules.
- Aided Tajikistan in developing two successful applications to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria (GFATM). USG assisted Tajikistan in developing the monitoring and evaluation component and budget for a $17 million HIV/AIDS application to contain the HIV epidemic through strengthening the supportive environment and scaling-up services.
- In collaboration with other donors, funded seminars for 63 representatives of 57 AIDS service organizations (ASOs). USG assistance supported the National Forum of ASOs, with participation of 62 non-governmental organizations from different regions of Tajikistan. The Forum promoted an integrated approach to HIV/AIDS control.
- Reached 3,806 sex workers with drug demand reduction messages as well as information on AIDS, other sexually-transmitted infections (STIs), and responsible behaviors to reduce STI risk. More than 21,000 youth received direct drug demand reduction services. Almost 1,000 drug users received drug treatment and HIV prevention information. More than 170,000 condoms were distributed to at-risk groups during educational events. And more than 125,000 condoms were sold as part of social marketing for HIV prevention.
- Worked with other donors and Tajikistan’s National Health Financing Strategy to implement a primary health care (PHC) per capita payment system. With USG supported technical assistance, national guidelines were established requiring that at least 40 percent of regional health budgets be allocated to PHC. Twenty-two percent of all Tajikistan PHC facilities are now functioning under the new per capita payment system, with 636,550 people (9 percent of the population) covered by USG-supported health financing arrangements.
- Launched a new program to socially market contraceptives in Tajikistan. Through this program, USG assistance trained 67 nurses on family planning counseling and service delivery, and reached 12,458 women of reproductive age with family planning messages. Documentation showed that 806 women accessed public family planning services due to direct referrals from the program.
- Helped Tajikistan move closer to “quality education for all” through support for improved in-service teacher education, improved curriculum that emphasizes learning skills, increased parent and community involvement in education, strengthened education management and finance systems, and improved school infrastructure. USG assistance funded and distributed more than 19,000 printed and multimedia resources and supported the Government’s implementation of a per capita education finance model in a total of 19 project sites.
In FY 2008, USG assistance:
- Provided assistance to 26 water users associations (WUA) in managing water and land resources, including four new associations established in vulnerable regions. Over 23,000 individuals received support in operation and maintenance of on-farm irrigation systems that will help raise crop productivity and farmer incomes. WUA reported increases in agricultural productivity (120 percent) and net income as a result of improved water availability, despite this year’s drought conditions. Increased income enabled members to double investments made for irrigation water management. During the year, the total number of activity beneficiaries surpassed 227,000 people. In response to the food security crisis, this project helped farmers access quality seeds, and, with improved technical and water management practices, they will be able to increase their 2008 winter wheat yield and 2009 spring/summer vegetable production.
- Helped with amendments to the Land Code that will provide for the legal transfer of land use and the adoption of the new Law on Mortgage and Law on the State Registration of Immovable Property Rights, which set the basis for a unified registration system. Legal successes were complemented by outreach efforts to educate farmers and provide legal assistance on land and farm restructuring issues. The project supported a network of 11 Legal Aid Centers, run by local NGOs, and 62 rural activists to provide training and legal assistance to farmers in critical areas of the country. Cases that could not be resolved through advocacy or mediation were taken to court, where Legal Aid Centers provided farmers with legal representation in 47 lawsuits. The project achieved a major court victory in successfully annulling $620,000 of debt for 62 farms.
- Strengthened the microfinance sector through the Association of Microfinance Organizations of Tajikistan. As a result of USG assistance, the Association actively participated in improving legislation such as a Credit Bureau law, the concept of a one-stop window for business registration, the system of permits, and the establishment of international rating indicators. In addition, the Association provided training to financial and agricultural sector representatives on such topics as new agricultural loan products and methods of using collateral. Improved quality of services has enabled the association to increase its membership from 37 to 56 institutions, with a total outstanding loan portfolio of $62 million and over 93,000 individual borrowers.
- Supported Junior Achievement to expand the economic and business education program for secondary school students. Ninety-seven teachers were trained, 185 schools implemented the program, and the total number of student beneficiaries during the year was 22,584. In addition, economics materials were amended and published, including 4,500 textbooks and student workbooks, and 200 teacher guides.
In FY 2008, USG assistance:
- Delivered 57 surface containers and four airlifts of humanitarian assistance valued at a total of $32 million. In response to the severe winter weather and the associated food shortage, assistance was provided to a total of 1.56 million people. Fifteen containers of Humanitarian Daily Rations was provided to earthquake victims in the Rasht region through the Embassy release of pre-staged disaster package items such as tents, blankets, and sleeping bags. In addition, in FY 2008 the humanitarian assistance program completed two small reconstruction projects – a boarding school for orphans and a village medical station.