|President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov addresses the world leaders at the UN General Assembly.|
The Embassy of Turkmenistan has contributed these articles on the occasion of 23rd anniversary of Independence Day of Turkmenistan. — ED.
The recent history of Turkmenistan takes its countdown from October 27, 1991 — the day of independence. Since then this date is marked as the Independence Day. An important milestone in the development of the country was December 12, 1995 when Turkmenistan was recognized as a permanently neutral state by the Resolution of the UN General Assembly with the unanimous support of all 185 member states (at that time). Finding this kind of unique status was a defining factor in domestic and foreign policy.
Turkmenistan has borders with Iran, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan, and has a coast line of Caspian Sea.
The territory of Turkmenistan is 491.2 thousand square kilometers. The capital of Turkmenistan is Ashgabat.
The population of Turkmenistan is about 6.2 million people. Turkmenistan is a multinational state. There are more than 100 nations and ethnic groups living in the country.
Turkmenistan is a democratic, legal, secular state. The Constitution of Turkmenistan is the Basic law of the state.
The form of government is a presidential republic. The President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov is the head of the state. People are the holder of sovereignty and the only source of power of Turkmenistan.
The state guarantees the freedom of religions and confessions and their equality before the law. Religious organizations are apart from the state and can't interfere with the state affairs and execute state functions. The main religion is Islam.
State power is based on the principle of separation of powers between the legislative, executive and judicial branches, which operate independently, balancing each other.
Turkmenistan, being a full subject of the global community, has the foreign policy of permanent neutrality, non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries, refrains from the use of force and participation in military blocs and alliances, promotes peaceful, friendly and mutually beneficial relations with countries in the region and states of the whole world.
Turkmenistan recognizes the priority of the universally accepted norms of international law.
For the past 23 years of independence, our country created the statehood and stable constitutional and legal base for social and economic development, provided effective state governance and democratic local authority and transformed the economy to the free market relations. President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov holds the constructive domestic and foreign policy, the main aim of which is the wellbeing and prosperity of the country and it each citizen. The Head of the State regularly conducts meetings with the Deputy Chairmen of the Cabinet of Minister's, head of the Parliament (Mejlis), as well as with governors (hakims) of the local regions and cities, including Ashgabat city. The meeting agenda covers the main issues related to social and economic development of the regions and capital city, the implementation of the national reform program and other key aspects of the life of the state and society.
The country's policy of radical social changes is aimed at the provision of the high living standard of the population.
Transition to market relations in Turkmenistan is being carried out in the framework of the state policy that ensures the population's social security. Currently, hundreds of modern hospitals, clinics, higher educational institutions, schools, kindergartens, sport facilities are under construction. They are equipped with the latest technologies. The citizens of Turkmenistan have free access to modern medical services and education.
Measures of social support, such as free gas, water and salt, the supply of electricity and petrol for population on beneficial conditions, very low charges for utilities and transportation, have no precedent in the international practice. This benefit will be valid until 2030.
Insignificant prices are fixed for bread, for the travel by the public transport, as well as by motor vehicles, railways and airlines inside country. More than 70% of the state budget of Turkmenistan is annually allocated for social needs. Turkmenistan annually increases salary, pension, public welfare payments and student grant by 10%. The state adjusted minimal sizes of residential, communal and transport services as per the world standards for the population of Turkmenistan
Turkmenistan has reformed and developed the field of national healthcare, giving it a status of the multipurpose system of social protection. An important part of public health policy is to consistently implement a strategy to reduce the morbidity of the population.
The Program "Saglyk" (health) is being implemented step by step through a strategy lowering morbidity. Turkmenistan ranks first in carrying out immunization activities, occupying a leading position in the region in terms of availability of vaccines and immunization.
In Turkmenistan, the vaccination is free. Turkmenistan, wholly or partly got rid of many kinds of diseases. Therefore, in 2002, Turkmenistan was granted a certificate for the cessation of circulation of wild poliovirus on its territory, which indicates the total eradication of polio.
Turkmenistan is the first among the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) and Central Asian countries and fourth in the world for universal salt iodization in accordance with accepted international standards; and, therefore, it was recognized as the country where one of the pressing problems of mankind - iodine deficiency, as mentioned in the certificate of the WHO in 2004, was eliminated. In order to prevent diseases associated with a lack of iron in human body, Turkmenistan, in close cooperation with foreign partners, implemented a number of major projects for the enrichment of food products, particularly flour and salt.
A part of the health care system is to build a state policy in the realization of policy goals for maternal and child health. The widespread establishment of health centers "Maternity and Childhood" ("EneMahri"), the successful implementation of national programs on breastfeeding and anemia control were highly appreciated by the major international organizations.
These measures enabled to decrease twice the infant mortality for the period 1990-2010 and managed to decrease the maternal mortality 10 times.
Intensive work on fighting with diseases such as malaria, measles and rubella is being conducted in the country. The country finishes the process of the complete elimination of malaria.
The country has the lowest ever record in tuberculosis. In October 2010 Turkmenistan was recognized as a malaria free country. This event was officially confirmed by the special certificate of the World Health Organization. The result of the successful international partnership for prevention and prevention of HIV infection is the fact that Turkmenistan is among the few countries where HIV infection and AIDS have not been spread.
Large-scale work is under way in order to modernize the national educational system and develop science in the higher educational institutions in Turkmenistan and bring them to the level of the developed states.
The intensive construction of new children's preschool institutions, secondary schools and higher educational institutions is being carried out throughout the country.
The latest information and communication technologies have been introduced into the educational system in order to raise the quality and effectiveness of teaching process. Schools and universities have been equipped with modern computers and multimedia means of teaching. At the beginning of school year on behalf of President of Turkmenistan each first grader receives the netbook.
Sport is a part of the social policy of Turkmenistan.
In this light, new sport facilities are being constructed in Ashgabat and regional centers. They are equipped with all necessary equipment for practicing various kinds of sport. Regional centers and Ashgabat city will have sport facilities meant for various competitions in running and cycling. In order to raise the qualification of coaches, it is necessary to arrange their training at the foreign sport schools. In order to work and prepare the national team of the country for the competitions, it is necessary to invite experienced coaches and conclude contracts with them.
One of the main tasks set before the State Sport Committee is to develop mass health movement and Olympic movement, propagate and introduce healthy way of life, attract citizens to practice sport and active recreation. President of Turkmenistan mentions, that special attention must be paid to the preparations of the V Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games to be held in Ashgabat. The program of the AIMAG 2017 will include chess, futsal, tennis, Muay Thai (Thai boxing), sambo, kurash, jiu-jitsu, bowling, cycling (track), swimming (50meters), athletics, weightlifting (power lifting), basketball, taekwondo (WTF), sport dance, kickboxing, belt wrestling, wrestling (Greco-Roman and freestyle) and billiard.
Additionally, according to the decision of the Olympic council of Asia in the Asian Indoor games, there will be sport competitions in the types of sport not enlisted in the program of the Olympic Games.
There will be competitions in cybersports, extreme sports, aerobics, field and track events, sport dances, football in a closed hall, hockey, swimming, bill-yards, bowling, chess and some others.
One of the major areas of the social policy is the development of tourism. This is one of the most important matters for our country. In this context, State Committee for Tourism of Turkmenistan was established in 2012. There is also the Committee for the Avaza National Tourist Zone within this newly established committee.
The priority objective of the State Committee for Tourism is the development of international tourism as the most profitable area of the tourism industry. New tourist routes will be opened in order to attract more foreign tourists.
The quality of services is being improved. Special attention is attached to the training of highly qualified personnel in this area and the improvement of the work, the arrangement of the effective advertising activity as well as the training of highly qualified staff for the effective management of hotel complexes in the Avaza National Tourist Zone. Necessary works will be conducted for the arrangement of the management of hotels in Turkmenistan in compliance with the highest international standards.