The policy pursued in our country is, first of all, aimed at the improvement of citizens’ welfare. The revenues obtained from various sources are directed to the social expenditures.
As a result of the socially oriented policy, since 2003, salaries have increased approximately by 8 times, pensions by more than 10 times; the poverty indicator is 5%. As a result of the opening of new workplaces, expansion of employment opportunities, the unemployment indicator has fallen to 5%. It should also be noted that in the last 16 years, more than 2 million jobs have been created in our country.
Last year alone, the minimum salary and social allowances were increased twice and minimum pension by 70%. 68, 000 families covering more than 280, 000 people benefit from targeted social assistance. Each family receives the monthly social aid in the amount of approximately 140 USD. Hundreds of thousands of İDPs have been provided with houses and apartments. IDP families are provided with the monthly benefit in the amount of 180 USD.
In parallel with the increase of employment opportunities, at the same time, the consistent and purposeful activity in the field of the creation of new jobs, the state finds various support mechanisms for low-income families. One of them is the targeted social assistance applied for a long time.
More families will be able to benefit from social assistance
Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev paid special attention to this field while receiving Minister of Labor and Social Protection of the Protection Sahil Babayev on March 16. The head of state asked about the execution process of the instruction he had given in connection with the expansion of the circle of those receiving social assistance.
Minister Sahil Babayev informed that if in early 2019, 40, 000 families benefitted from this program, by the end of the year, their number reached 72, 000.
“During one year, an approximately 60-70% increase was achieved. On the other hand, within the framework of the funds allocated from the state budget for this year, it is planned to provide 85-90, 000 families with targeted social assistance. In turn, it means the expansion of the targeted social assistance program by additional 20%. Along with this, you gave a task to mitigate the criteria and support the population in this direction. Last year, steps in a number of directions were taken. Concessions on land property were applied, and as a result of that reform, additional 7, 000 families could benefit from the targeted social assistance program. Proposals on the increase of the limits of the utility costs have been prepared for this year, and it is being discussed by the government. We will be able to provide 85-90, 000 families with targeted social assistance by the adoption of the amendments to the legislation by the new Parliament.
In parallel, the increase of the criterion of need by more than 10% gave an opportunity to raise the targeted social assistance from 143 AZN to 160 AZN.
If in 2018, the amount of the targeted social assistance was 160 AZN, last year, it reached 200 AZN. According to this year’s forecast, this figure will be between 215-220 AZN.
It means that those, who receive the targeted social assistance, will be provided with this amount.”
The Azerbaijani model is observed
The policy pursued by Azerbaijan in the social field is observed with interest on an international scale.
The report prepared by founder and President of the Davos World Economic Forum, Professor Claus Martin Schwab and published in 2018 featured the analysis results of the competitiveness indicators of 140 countries and the scientific research on the impact on the inclusive development of the country at the cost of the increase of people’s welfare.
It is indicated in the report that despite the fact that the economic indicators of the U.S., Germany and Denmark are significantly higher than other countries, but Azerbaijan has a better position in terms of the social policy. In other words, Azerbaijan is distinguished among other countries by the most beneficial social policy.
The wide usage of electronic technologies in the social sphere in Azerbaijan creates an opportunity for ensuring maximum transparency in this field. Our country renews and improves this system on a constant basis. This factor is also highly appreciated by international institutions. According to the results of the competition organized by the International Social Insurance Association last year with the participation of 76 social projects from 20 countries, the electronic system on the targeted state social assistance by Azerbaijan’s Ministry of Labor and Social Protection of the Population received a special award. It was the result of the creation of the transparent electronic system in this field.
Currently, to receive the targeted social assistance, a citizen can apply online by entering information about their family, incomes, property, etc., and this information is checked in an automated regime and accepted. It minimizes the official-citizen interaction and ensures the adoption of transparent and fast decisions and serves the increase of citizens’ welfare.
The targeted social assistance program is expanded
In accordance with the task of President Ilham Aliyev, to expand the targeted state social assistance program, a bill on changes to the rules on assigning, receiving and refusing social assistance has been prepared. The limit of utility and communication costs of those applying for the targeted social assistance will be increased. Last year, the number of families receiving the targeted social assistance reached from 40, 000 to 72, 000 people. This year, it is planned to provided 85-90, 000 people with targeted social assistance.