The president of Turkmenistan traditionally makes two important speeches at the start of the year, one at the expanded session of the cabinet of ministers and the other at the parliament. Together, these speeches serve as report card for the previous year and roadmap for the current year.
On 25 February 2021, President Berdimuhamedov met the parliamentarians and made his annual speech. The session was held at the Ruhiyat Palace instead of the parliament house to ensure compliance with the requirements of social distancing as a preventive measure against any infectious diseases.
The president appreciated the work of the parliament during the previous year and pointed out that because of the present and potential challenges arising from a number of factors there was the need to review most of the key laws of Turkmenistan.
The underlying idea of the president’s remarks was that many of the laws were adequate at the time they were drafted but some bottlenecks may have arisen because of the changing situations. Also, there are areas where the country needs to move faster, and at the same time take care of the interests of the economy and the nation. This entails revamping of some laws and creation of some new laws.
He said, “Today the world is changing at a rapid pace. Almost every week, new issues arise that require urgent solutions. Humanity is experiencing a global recession due to the coronavirus pandemic, which has become the biggest disaster in the century.”
“The monthly damage that the pandemic inflicts on the global economy is about US $ 400 billion. To date, 500 million jobs have been lost worldwide. In addition, the deterioration of the ecological situation in the region and on the planet is of utmost concern,” said the president.
The president underlined the need to review or completely revamp the following laws:
· The set of laws regulating the export promotion and import substitution drive
· The laws related to efficient use of public funds, investment activities, and financial markets
· The laws covering the digital economy including digital systems, development of information and communication systems, improving the quality and reliability of information services, full-scale use of human intellectual potential
· The laws that describe the legal conditions for attracting investments, the system of registration of enterprises, stimulate the creation of joint ventures equipped with advanced technologies and produce competitive products, and expand international trade and economic relations – in particular the law “On state registration of legal entities”
· Laws related to the creation of free economic zones and ensuring their fruitful functioning.
· In the sphere of rights and freedoms of the citizens, the Code of Turkmenistan “On Administrative Offenses”
· Preparation of a new version of the Arbitration Procedure Code
· Laws of Turkmenistan “On combating legalization of proceeds from crime, financing of terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction”, and “On the prevention and elimination of emergency situations”
· Laws on gender equality and women’s rights
· Laws on protection and care of health, including those related to determining the legal, organizational, economic and social foundations for the prevention of infectious and non-infectious diseases
· Revision of the Labour Code of Turkmenistan to strengthen the social protection of citizens, ensuring their constitutional rights to work, healthy and safe working conditions, and modernizing of labour relations
· Laws related to centrality of family as the basic unit of the society and promotion of traditional values of patriotism, respect for the elders, care for the young, and harmony in the society
· Law on “On Creative Unions” to carefully preserve national traditions and customs, history, culture, as well as improve living conditions, guarantee the legal and social protection of creative workers, regulate legal relations in this area
· Law “On Education”
· Laws in the sphere of communications and postal services
· Law “On Renewable Energy Sources”
· Law “On hunting and hunting management” to determine the legal, economic and organizational foundations of work in this area, particularly the fishing and the Caspian bio resources
· Law “On horse breeding and equestrian sports”
· Water Code of Turkmenistan
· Law “On the State Land Cadastre”
· Law “On the diplomatic service”
· Law “On the legal status of foreign citizens in Turkmenistan”
· Laws “On migration”, and “On the migration service”
· Law “On Local Self-Government”
It can be expected that the revision or creation of these laws will trigger adjustment to several other laws of Turkmenistan. The purpose is to keep the legal system agile and responsive.
The president said that Turkmenistan will switch to the bicameral system of parliament when the elections of the Khalk Maslahaty [Peoples Council] will take place on 28 March 2021. He said that the elections will be indirect i.e. the members of the lower Khalk Maslahaty in the provinces and in Ashgabat will elect the members for the national Khalk Maslahaty.
On February 25, at the Rukhyet Palace, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov met with the country’s parliamentarians, at which the tasks facing the national parliament were specified, as well as the priority areas of legislative work at the next stage of development of the independent Turkmen state in the era of power and happiness.
Before the meeting, the head of state held a meeting, exchanging views with the leaders of the Mejlis, political parties and public organizations on the key tasks for the further development of an independent neutral Motherland in 2021, the motto of which is “Turkmenistan is the Home of Peace and Trust”.
The leader of the nation noted that these structures play a significant role in popularizing the country’s domestic and foreign policy, nurturing the democratic foundations of society, and strengthening the unity of the people.
In the era of power and happiness, parliamentarians, members of political parties and public organizations make a worthy contribution to solving the tasks set.
The successful solution of these tasks is an important condition for ensuring a prosperous and happy life of the people, the head of state said, focusing on the fact that work should be carried out on regular basis to clarify the essence of constructive initiatives put forward by neutral Turkmenistan that have received international recognition and support, the meaning and content of new developments, and laws and decisions taken at the state level.
The leaders of the Mejlis informed about the ongoing comprehensive work aimed at the successful implementation of the recommendations made by the President of Turkmenistan to modernize national legislation, to clarify the significance of the achievements of the independence era in the framework of public and political events held among the population, to intensify international cooperation and to introduce best practices into the activities of parliament.
Further, the leaders of the country’s political parties noted that large-scale strategic reforms are being implemented in Turkmenistan in a new historical era. The work carried out in all spheres of life of the state and society, as well as the steps taken to build up constructive international partnership, are yielding positive results.
The heads of public organizations informed about the activities carried out, including the practical steps taken by members of trade unions and the Women’s Union to protect the legitimate rights and interests of citizens and women.
It was also reported about the measures being implemented by the Makhtumkuli Youth Organization to solve the tasks set by President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov to intensify the work carried out among young people, to widely involve them in participating in significant events in public life.
The leader of the nation emphasized the importance of issues related to improving the work of the legislative and executive bodies, the adoption and implementation of significant legislative acts, the effectiveness of measures taken by democratic institutions of civil society.
In this context, the President of Turkmenistan emphasized that particular importance is attached to the successful implementation of the state policy focused on the peaceful progressive development of the Motherland, ensuring the prosperous life of the people, as well as organizing mass explanatory events to reveal its essence and content. This plays an important role in actively promoting the reforms deployed in the country, strengthening the unity and cohesion of society, inspiring the Turkmen people to new grandiose labor victories.
Today, issues of ensuring a happy life for citizens, realizing the creative potential of Turkmen citizens, including women and youth, harmonious development, education and training of the young generation in accordance with modern requirements are identified as priorities of state policy, the leader of the nation said. In this regard, the head of Turkmenistan drew attention to the need for coordinated interaction of the relevant structures for the optimal solution of the tasks set in this direction.
We should take a very responsible approach to the celebration of the glorious 30th anniversary of the independence of Turkmenistan. Along with this, the leader of the nation stressed the need to make every effort to solve the tasks outlined in the Program of the country’s socio-economic development for 2019-2025 and other state plans.
Then the leader of the nation held a meeting with the parliamentary corps of Turkmenistan.
Having greeted those present, the head of state addressed everyone with a keynote speech. The leader of the nation noted that in our country there is a wonderful custom – to consult with the people, to be guided by their opinion when starting any responsible business. During today’s meeting, following this wise tradition, the key tasks for the further comprehensive development of our independent neutral state in 2021 will be discussed, the motto of which is “Turkmenistan is the Home of Peace and Trust”.
In a few months, significant dates will be widely and solemnly celebrated, which occupy an important place in the national calendar: the 140th anniversary of Ashgabat and the 30th anniversary of the country’s independence.
Independence Day is a national holiday that inspires people to reach new high levels in the name of a prosperous and happy life. Therefore, the historically significant date of the creation of our independent state – September 27 – will be marked by new glorious successes and victories that will multiply the achievements that testify to the confident advancement of our country along the path of peace, creation and progress, the leader of the nation said.
Despite the financial and economic downturn in the global economy, the head of state said, last year the implementation of new economic reforms continued, modern technologies and digital systems were introduced in all areas, productive work was carried out to form innovative and industrial clusters, expand international partnership, and further revitalize investment activities.
As a result, a stable dynamics of economic growth has been ensured and its competitiveness has been strengthened, concrete measures have been implemented to achieve high levels in industry and investment, the social sphere, and an increase in the welfare of the population.
As President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov noted further, the current meeting will not touch upon issues of the country’s economic situation and international issues, which were previously discussed at special working meetings with industry leaders and an expanded meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers. And today the tasks related to the further improvement of domestic legislation will be discussed.
Taking into account the interests of the state, society and every person, the President of Turkmenistan said, the national legal system is being modernized in accordance with the requirements of the times. Despite the fact that last year the deputies of the Mejlis, together with the Cabinet of Ministers, relevant ministries and sectoral departments, carried out certain legislative work, in general, its results are unsatisfactory, said the leader of the nation Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov.
As was emphasized, today the world is changing at a rapid pace. Almost every week, new issues arise that require urgent solutions. Humanity is experiencing a global recession due to the coronavirus pandemic, which has become the biggest disaster in the century.
The monthly damage that the pandemic inflicts on the global economy is about US $ 400 billion. To date, 500 million jobs have been lost worldwide. In addition, the deterioration of the ecological situation in the region and on the planet is of utmost concern.
Together with neighboring countries and the world community, we continue to work to minimize the consequences of the ecological cataclysm caused by the drying up of the Aral Sea, but the situation is still difficult. Based on this, we have the right to expect from the parliament deputies prompt and concrete measures to respond to these circumstances, including the preparation and adoption of appropriate legislative acts, the head of state said.
Focusing the attention of the meeting participants on issues of primary importance, the President of the country pointed out that the Mejlis needs to qualitatively improve the level of the entire legal platform and, first of all, develop laws that directly determine the present and future of our country as a socially oriented legal state. This applies to such key areas as economics, health care, education, employment and wages, social guarantees.
As the leader of the nation Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov emphasized, the main tasks in the “Program of the President of Turkmenistan for the socio-economic development of the country for 2019-2025” are determined by further prosperity, increasing the economic potential of our independent Motherland and the welfare of the people.
In this context, it was noted that it was necessary to form a legal basis for the reforms provided for in the Presidential Program, adopt new legislative acts aimed at increasing the efficiency of industries in a market economy, their active integration into the global economic space, and also improve existing laws.
It is necessary, while supporting the entrepreneurial initiative of citizens, to stimulate investment activity, the head of Turkmenistan said, it is necessary to privatize state property and create joint-stock companies.
In the conditions of market relations, we are pursuing a scientifically grounded economic strategy, and we attach particular importance to the full provision of the domestic market with domestic products. Therefore, it is necessary to improve and bring up to date the laws regulating these relations, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov emphasized.
The work should continue to widely use the potential of the private sector in all sectors, despite the continuing unfavorable phenomena in the global economy and the difficult financial and economic situation, as well as pay special attention to government assistance to business, the stable development of the financial and economic system, the leader of the nation said.
At the same time, the head of state pointed out the need to expand the scale of the work being done to efficiently use public funds, regulate fiscal and monetary relations, stimulate investment activity, and develop financial markets.
Improvement of legislation in the field of assistance to manufacturers of import-substituting products and creation of additional jobs was also named as a topical area of activity of the parliament.
Further, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov focused the attention of parliamentarians on another important issue. So, the important tasks today are the incorporation of innovative technologies into various segments of the national economy to increase its competitiveness, the creation of a well-functioning electronic industry, and the leveling of the difference between the city and the countryside.
A special role in this is assigned to digital systems, which, in turn, requires the development of information and communication systems, improving the quality and reliability of information services, full-scale use of human intellectual potential.
The development of digital economy in the country creates an environment for the implementation of effective systems, achieving economic growth and high labor productivity in the long term, will contribute to improving the quality and establishment of modern public services, improving social conditions, as well as minimizing technology-related risks and expanding the possibilities of the Internet. In this aspect, for the development of the digital economy, it is necessary to systematically modernize its legislative base, the head of state said.
As the leader of the nation noted, today our country has turned into a strategic transport and logistics hub for the region and the continent. In addition, one of the key areas of the national economy has become the industrial development of deposits of natural raw materials and their processing, the production of finished products with high added value.
Therefore, it is necessary to provide optimal legal conditions for attracting investments, improve the system of registration of enterprises, stimulate the creation of joint ventures equipped with advanced technologies and produce competitive products, and expand international trade and economic relations.
To this end, it is necessary to regularly improve national legislation, and in particular, to prepare a draft Law of Turkmenistan “On state registration of legal entities” to bring this system up to date.
It is also necessary to carry out work on the modernization and development of the infrastructure formed in certain regions and settlements of our country, to involve entrepreneurs in this activity, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov said.
In addition, it was emphasized that at the regional level it is necessary to introduce new methods of economic management that meet the standards of a market economy, to intensify economic activity, creating new jobs. To this end, unremitting attention should be paid to improving legislative acts relating to the creation of free economic zones and ensuring their fruitful functioning.
As the head of state further emphasized, one of the main directions of the legislative activity of the National Parliament is the protection of the rights and freedoms of citizens, as well as the protection of their health, ensuring the sanitary and epidemiological well-being of the population, adhering to the norms of public morality, ensuring public order and security, protecting property, legal interests individual, society and state, their effective implementation.
In this context, it is advisable to amend and supplement the Code of Turkmenistan “On Administrative Offenses”.
It is also necessary to prepare and adopt a new version of the Arbitration Procedure Code, having studied the modern experience of resolving disputes in arbitration courts, the leader of the nation noted.
Based on modern requirements, it is necessary to continue the work on the preparation of the Civil Code in the new edition. In this regard, the President of Turkmenistan spoke about the expediency, in accordance with international practice, to set out in this Code the norms of private international law.
At the same time, the head of state stressed the importance of preparing projects and adopting a new version of the Laws of Turkmenistan “On combating legalization of proceeds from crime, financing of terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction”, and “On the prevention and elimination of emergency situations.”
Addressing the deputies of the national parliament, the leader of the nation noted that they should closely interact with political parties and public associations, and involve them in improving the country’s legislation, hold joint meetings with farmers and student youth in order to study their views and wishes.
Together with women’s and youth organizations and with the participation of women lawyers, it is necessary to strengthen the work carried out among women and girls, organize discussions on the rights and responsibilities of women, national family traditions and values, and moral education. The Mejlis must establish strict control over the implementation of laws on gender equality by political parties and public organizations, the head of state said.
Stressing that health is the greatest wealth of a person, the leader of the nation noted that in accordance with the State Program “Saglyk”, every effort is being made to systematically improve the health care system as a key factor in the sustainable development of the state and society.
In this regard, the head of state pointed out the importance of systematic analysis and improvement of laws related to the protection of the health of citizens, including those determining the legal, organizational, economic and social foundations for the prevention of infectious and non-infectious diseases.
Continuing the social theme, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov emphasized the systemic nature of the policy in the field of improving the living conditions of the population. In order to increase the well-being of the people, the salaries of employees of budgetary organizations, self-supporting enterprises and public organizations, pensions and state benefits, scholarships for students and listeners are increasing by 10 percent annually in the country.
Continuing this work in the future, special importance should be attached to laws aimed at strengthening the legal framework of reforms in the field of social protection of citizens, ensuring their constitutional rights to work, healthy and safe working conditions, modernizing labor relations, the head of state said. In this regard, it was noted that it is necessary to prepare a draft of the Labor Code in a new edition.
Stressing that a decent upbringing of the young generation is the key to our success, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov noted the need to pay great attention to family values. After all, all the best personality traits, as a rule, are brought up in the family.
It is in the family that the foundations of national pride are laid for the achievements of our independent state and society, and respect for other peoples. In order to systematically improve and strengthen the legal foundations of these relations, the leader of the nation spoke about the need to make appropriate changes to the Family Code of Turkmenistan that meet the requirements of the time and national mentality.
Our main goal is to educate compatriots, first of all, young people, in the spirit of love for the Motherland, as citizens caring for its future and proud of national traditions and customs, the leader of the nation said.
Addressing the audience, the head of Turkmenistan also noted that special attention should be paid to the development of culture – the soul of the people, preservation, enrichment and widespread popularization of the national heritage of ancestors. Cooperation with UNESCO is one of the priority directions of the state strategy pursued in the international arena in this area.
The result of this long-term partnership was the inclusion in the UNESCO World Heritage List of the state historical and cultural reserves “Ancient Merv” and “Kunyaurgench”, the historical and cultural monuments “New and Old Nisa”, and the epic “Gorogly”, the art of singing and dancing “Kushtdepdi” and of national carpet art of the Turkmen people – on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
In addition, relevant work is being carried out aimed at glorifying in the world the craft of making dutar and the performing art of bakhshi, the traditions of raising Akhal-Teke horses and breeding Turkmen Alabai, as well as including the capital of our country, the city of Ashgabat, in the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.
As the President of the country noted, in order to carefully preserve national traditions and customs, history, culture, as well as improve living conditions, guarantee the legal and social protection of creative workers, regulate legal relations in this area, it would be advisable to develop a draft Law of Turkmenistan “On Creative Unions “.
Focusing on the priorities of the state youth policy, the leader of the nation Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov emphasized that its main goal is to ensure the harmonious development of the young generation, to receive modern education for them, to educate them in the spirit of patriotism and love for the Motherland. The construction of various educational institutions, equipped with modern computers, educational and technical equipment, interactive and multimedia technologies, continues in the country.
For the further development of the education system in accordance with modern trends, strengthening its legislative base, it is also necessary to carry out the necessary work to prepare a draft of the new edition of the Law “On Education”, the leader of the nation said.
The President of Turkmenistan stressed that energy diplomacy plays a key role in the foreign policy of our independent state. On the basis of our initiatives, the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted a Resolution that concerns ensuring stable and reliable supplies of energy resources to world markets.
Possessing colossal reserves of hydrocarbon raw materials, Turkmenistan has designated as a key task the provision of industry with high technologies, the dynamic development of the economy by attracting significant investments. In this context, our country pays great attention to the rational and efficient use of fuel and energy resources.
With the launch of the first national artificial satellite into outer space, ample opportunities and conditions have emerged for establishing a telecommunications system that meets world standards, and improving the quality of television and radio channels. Much is being done to provide our citizens with high-speed Internet, postal services and other services.
In this regard, it was noted that in order to legally regulate public relations in the field of postal services, the rights and obligations of the parties to the postal business, as well as the powers of state bodies, it is necessary to improve the legal framework in this area.
Addressing parliamentarians and members of the Cabinet of Ministers, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov noted that by attracting foreign capital, modern power plants were built in all regions, and the existing ones were reconstructed.
Thus, the energy independence of our country has been ensured. At the same time, Turkmenistan became an electricity exporting state. Priority directions for the development of the national energy sector are outlined for the coming decades, and measures to strengthen the position of our country in the structure of the world energy are specified.
At the same time, it is necessary to ensure the stability of the growth of the electric power industry of our independent state, for which it is necessary to develop the power supply systems of individual regions and localities of the country. To this end, it is necessary to develop innovative technologies in the field of environmentally friendly renewable energy sources.
Thus, the State Program for Energy Saving for 2018-2024, the Program for the Development of Energy Diplomacy of Turkmenistan for 2021-2025 and the National Strategy for the Development of Renewable Energy in Turkmenistan until 2030 were adopted.
In order to strengthen the legal framework in this direction, to implement the adopted documents, the head of state spoke about the advisability of adopting the Law “On Renewable Energy Sources”.
Continuing the environmental theme, the President of Turkmenistan noted that appropriate work is also being carried out to increase the population of birds of prey freely living in nature and in the Caspian Sea of our Fatherland, measures are being taken to protect and rationally use the hunting grounds of the state, to protect and increase the number of animal species that are occur rarely or are endangered.
In this context, the leader of the nation Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov pointed out the need to bring the Law “On hunting and hunting management” to the present state, which will determine the legal, economic and organizational foundations of work in this area.
In the context of the transition of all segments of the economy to market rails, cardinal reforms are being carried out in the fisheries sector. The State Fisheries Committee of the country was abolished and the enterprises of the industry were transferred to the management of entrepreneurs. In this regard, the modernization of legislation on fisheries and the careful protection of aquatic biological resources is gaining relevance.
Addressing the meeting participants, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov emphasized the importance of work to preserve the Akhal-Teke horses, increase their livestock, revive noble traditions in this area, comprehensive study and further development of horse breeding.
In our country, the leader of the nation said, the National Day of the Turkmen Horse is widely and solemnly celebrated in April every year. A conference of the International Association of Akhal-Teke Horse Breeding is also held. International cooperation is developing in this area, which requires the improvement of legislation, in particular, the introduction of appropriate amendments to the Law of Turkmenistan “On horse breeding and equestrian sports”.
We attach special importance to the creation of food abundance in our country, providing the population with ecologically clean products, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov emphasized. Continuing the topic, the leader of the nation noted that the importance of using new organizational and legal forms in agricultural production in accordance with international experience and the requirements of the time, national characteristics is gaining. Among the very important tasks is the efficient and rational use of water and land resources.
In this regard, the deputies of the Mejlis must carry out the necessary work to improve the Water Code, as well as the Law “On the State Land Cadastre”, the head of state said, expressing confidence that these laws will give good results in creating the legal framework for cardinal reforms in agriculture.
As President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov emphasized, independence has opened up new opportunities for establishing friendly relations with foreign countries. In this context, work is being carried out aimed at all-round assistance to the efforts of the international community in ensuring peace on the planet, general security and sustainable development.
In the past 2020, an anniversary date was celebrated – the 25th anniversary of the permanent neutrality of Turkmenistan. The policy pursued by our state is widely supported by the international community, which is clearly confirmed by the Resolution “The Role and Significance of the Policy of Neutrality in Maintaining and Strengthening International Peace, Security and Sustainable Development”, unanimously adopted at the 75th session of the UN General Assembly.
At the 47th meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, the Resolution “The role of neutrality policy in maintaining and strengthening international peace, security and sustainable development in the region of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and around the world” was also adopted.
As you know, at the initiative of Turkmenistan, the United Nations adopted the Resolution “2021 – International Year of Peace and Confidence.”
Speaking about this, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov noted that this year, passing under the motto “Turkmenistan is the Home of Peace and Trust”, reforms should be carried out aimed at implementing the international obligations assumed by our neutral state.
It is necessary to thoroughly study the international legal norms set forth in international treaties, agreements and conventions to which Turkmenistan is a party. Here the main task is to carry out work on the legislative support of the foreign policy of our neutral state.
In particular, it is necessary to make additions to the Law “On the diplomatic service”, as well as to develop a draft of a new edition of the Law “On the legal status of foreign citizens in Turkmenistan”. In addition, it is necessary to develop draft Laws on amendments and additions to the Laws “On migration”, and “On the migration service”.
Along with this, the Mejlis should systematically continue work to ensure the legal framework of the country’s international relations. In this context, among the main tasks, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov outlined the implementation of measures related to strengthening and developing cooperation with foreign parliaments and authoritative international organizations.
As the leader of the nation pointed out, within the framework of the ongoing constitutional reforms, one of the important tasks is to increase the efficiency of the work of local self-government bodies, to ensure that the Gengeshes and public bodies of territorial self-government fulfill the powers provided for in the Constitution and laws of Turkmenistan.
From this point of view, it will be advisable to develop a draft Law “On Local Self-Government”. It should include provisions related to improving the activities of Gengeshes [village councils], and improving the quality of services provided to the population.
The focus of the Mejlis should be on improving the electoral legislation and electoral system of the country. Based on this, it is necessary to systematically improve the Electoral Code, the head of state said.
It was also noted that the National Parliament should provide all possible assistance to the velayat, etrap and city khalk maslakhats, as well as the Gengeshes, in order to organize their work in accordance with the requirements. To this end, it is necessary to conduct joint seminars, and thoroughly explain the relevant legislative acts.
Life demands from all of us decisive actions, creative undertakings, important reforms, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov said. In this regard, it is necessary to analyze and update all legislation. The adoption of laws that meet the high requirements of the time will make it possible to improve the legal system, will further strengthen the legislative foundations of an independent state, confidently advancing to new heights with the swiftness of a horse in an era of power and happiness.
Addressing the deputies and members of the Cabinet, the head of state touched upon the plans for the further development of the country and the achievement of better results this year, first of all, to ensure strong social protection of the people. In order to strengthen the economic power of the independent Motherland, further prosperity of the Motherland and bring it to the level of developed countries of the world, as well as improve the well-being of the population, a number of programs for the socio-economic development of the country have been adopted. For their full implementation, everyone must work hard and with enthusiasm, and the deputies of the Mejlis must improve the existing laws in accordance with the requirements of the time, and, if necessary, adopt new legislative acts.
At the last September meeting of the Khalk Maslakhaty, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov continued, important tasks were set related to improving public administration and society, the activities of the representative and legislative bodies of state power. This stage of transformations is aimed at strengthening the democratic, legal and secular foundations of the state and society, creating stable political institutions.
Today the legislative body of state power of the country is switching to a qualitatively new, bicameral parliamentary system, which is a very important historical event in the social and political life of our state. This serves as a vivid example of the triumph of the humanistic motto “The state is for the person!” and the entire state policy, consistently implemented for its practical implementation.
In general, all this creates ample opportunities for our citizens to participate in governing the state and society – through representative bodies, on the basis of the free use of their constitutional right to elect and be elected.
Referring to the upcoming elections of members of the Khalk Maslakhaty of Milli Gengesh of Turkmenistan, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov noted that they are fundamentally different from those held earlier. These elections are called “not direct” and are being held in our country for the first time.
Guided by the tasks of improving the political system, democratizing the state and public life of the country, the upcoming elections must be held at a high level, in an atmosphere of openness and transparency, the leader of the nation stressed. In accordance with the articles of the Constitution of Turkmenistan and the norms of international law, the requirements of the electoral legislation must be strictly observed.
Speaking about this, the head of state noted that the Mejlis of Turkmenistan, working creatively, in a very short time carried out a lot of work to improve the electoral legislation.
In accordance with the Constitution, the Law “On Milli Gengesh of Turkmenistan” was adopted, normative legal acts arising from this document were developed, amendments and additions were made to the Electoral Code, which will make it possible to hold elections at a high organizational level.
It is very important that people who enjoy immense authority and respect among the people and who passionately love their Motherland should be nominated as candidates for membership in the Khalk Maslakhaty. For, the effectiveness of the work of the Khalk Maslakhaty Milli Gengesh in the future will depend on the level of knowledge and professionalism of its members. Fulfillment of these requirements is also of great importance for ensuring well-coordinated joint work of the chambers of the Milli Gengesh, the President of Turkmenistan said, noting that the Mejlis and the Central Election Commission should continue to work in this direction.
As the leader of the nation noted, our country not only proclaimed the electoral rights of citizens, but also created the necessary conditions for their use. Our society, public associations, showing great interest in transforming the system of the country’s legislative power, are taking an active part in this work.
In this regard, it is necessary, with the participation of deputies of the Mejlis, political parties, representatives of public organizations and relevant specialists, to carry out on the ground, among the population, work to explain the meaning of the upcoming elections, to organize meetings and speeches on television and radio channels.
The transformation of the country’s legislative authority will make it possible to even better represent the interests of all strata of the Turkmen society, as well as the regions [provinces], in the national Parliament. All this will contribute to the solution of pressing issues, will have a positive impact on the development and application of laws, create conditions for establishing closer relations between deputies and voters, and create new opportunities for effective control over the implementation of laws and national programs.
Thus, adhering to democratic norms of free competition, openness, freedom of speech and ideas, we will hold elections for members of the Khalk Maslakhaty Milli Gengesh of Turkmenistan on March 28, 2021, the leader of the nation noted, stressing that the rich experience accumulated by our society and state in the past and in the current environment is an invaluable contribution to moving forward.
Summing up the above, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov expressed confidence that the priority in the work of the Khalk Maslakhaty and the Mejlis of Milli Gengesh will be generally recognized norms of international law, respect for the equality of man and citizen before the law, their rights and freedoms, free discussion and decision-making, taking into account public opinion based on democracy, openness, justice and the rule of law.
Speaking about the preparations for the wide celebration of the anniversary date – the 30th anniversary of sacred independence this year, held under the motto “Turkmenistan is the Motherland of Peace and Trust”, the head of state emphasized that in a short time by historical standards, strong foundations of democratic, legal and secular state.
Great changes have taken place in the consciousness of the people, in cultural and spiritual life, and absolutely new social relations have been formed.
During this time, the material and spiritual values of the state, independence, high humanistic traditions of the people, passed down from generation to generation, have been revived, rooted in the depths of centuries.
A valuable experience of friendly relations with foreign countries and international organizations has been accumulated, which serves peace, general well-being and sustainable development.
Over the years of independence, Turkmenistan has proved the fundamentality and effectiveness of the chosen path of national development, important political, economic and environmental initiatives have been put forward at the international level. Our country has gained a huge international and peacekeeping authority, and has become a powerful and dynamically developing state with long-term development goals.
As the head of state noted, the program of events in the country and foreign countries, planned on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of independence of Turkmenistan, 25th anniversary of permanent neutrality, as well as the proclamation of 2021 as the Year of “Turkmenistan – Home of Peace and Trust” was approved.
In accordance with this Program, it is necessary to publicize by all means and methods the historical significance of the transformations that have taken place during the years of independence in the life of the country, the international authority of our state, to bring to the world community the experience of building the Turkmen state
The Mejlis should clearly outline the main directions of work carried out on this occasion by political parties, public organizations, and the country’s mass media.
All the necessary means should be used to assess the current level of socio-economic development of the Turkmen society, the true situation of the current historical era, to educate and develop a sense of high pride in the Motherland among the people. In the events held on the occasion of the celebration of the 30th anniversary of sacred independence, the current appearance of our Motherland should be fully revealed in the works of literature and art created.
Each of us, with our hard work, must turn our Motherland – independent neutral Turkmenistan – into an even more prosperous and powerful state, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov emphasized.
The speech of the head of state was heard with great enthusiasm and was received with thunderous applause.
Then the head of state gave the floor to the head of the Mejlis of Turkmenistan G. Mammedova, who emphasized that at the beginning of the year, at a meeting with the deputies of the national parliament, the leader of the nation gives valuable advice on improving the legislative activity of the state, the rapid development of each industry, analyzes in detail the issues raised, as well as their ways for a successful solution, and makes fair comments and defines tasks for the near future.
And the current historic meeting, which is held annually under the slogan “Turkmenistan is the Home of Peace and Trust” and the 30th anniversary of the celebration of the independence of the Motherland, is of great importance to us, said the Chairman of the Mejlis.
It was noted that under the wise leadership of the leader of the nation Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, the Turkmen people live in prosperity and abundance, as evidenced by the ongoing reforms and the successes achieved in the country in the current difficult times, historically significant political, economic and cultural events that mark every day of each month of sovereign development.
The goals of the great personality – Turkmen leader Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, are based on the tasks set at today’s meeting to protect the rights, freedoms and legitimate interests of citizens, the unity and cohesion of the people, the integrity of every home and the well-being of the family, care for a person and the eternal inviolability of the foundations of the state, parliament.
Expressing deep gratitude to the President of Turkmenistan for the constant attention to the work of the Mejlis, the assistance and support provided, the Speaker of the Parliament stated that today the head of state expressed fair remarks and shortcomings in the activities of the Mejlis, and also voiced proposals to improve legislation, increase the efficiency of work, and set new responsible tasks.
Noting that the instructions of the head of state on the steady implementation of legal reforms oblige parliamentarians to work diligently and effectively, the chairman of the Mejlis assured the leader of the nation that the deputies, based on the principles of justice and humanism inherited from their ancestors, will do everything necessary to modernize the legislative system.
Strengthening, especially among young people, physical and mental health is important for the future of the people, the legislative framework is being modernized in the field of attracting the population to a healthy lifestyle, as well as ensuring the protection of the environment.
In this context, it was emphasized that the deputies will do everything necessary for the organized holding of the upcoming elections of members of the Khalk Maslakhaty Milli Gengesh in accordance with national democratic traditions. This campaign will be held for the first time in connection with the restructuring of the country’s parliament into a bicameral system initiated by President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov.
The Chairperson of the Mejlis wished the leader of the nation good health, success in activities for the benefit of the people and the country, assuring that the deputies, guided by centuries-old national traditions and spiritual values of the Turkmen people, and then together with the Cabinet of Ministers, state and public organizations, as well as local self-government bodies will fulfill the tasks assigned to them.
As you can see, we face very large and responsible tasks, the head of state said, expressing firm confidence that they will be successfully solved, which will be a worthy gift for the 30th anniversary of the independence of our Motherland, a significant contribution to the all-round prosperity of our native land.
This year, proclaimed as the Year of Peace and Trust, we, with boundless pride in our Motherland, will confidently achieve the set great goals and high goals. After all, our independent neutral state is a country of fulfillment of desires, a land of prosperity and happiness, the President of Turkmenistan emphasized.
“Forward, forward, only forward, native land – Turkmenistan!” said the leader of the nation Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, in conclusion wishing the participants of the meeting good health, family well-being, happiness and great success in their responsible work. /// nCa / TDH, 25-26 February 2021