President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev has approved the Program for Further Development and Modernization of the Coal Industry by 2021.
The document was approved due to serious shortcomings revealed in the work of the Uzbekugol company. They mainly lied in inefficient operation of equipment, weak production discipline, serious lag in modernization of capacities and implementation of certain investment projects.
According to experts, this led to a significant decline in the performance of the industry over the past five years. So, for example, this resulted in underrun of 128.9 million cubic meters in terms of mine stripping, over 4 million tons of coal production, and 320,500 tons of the concurrently mined kaolin.
President Mirziyoyev assigned to develop integrated measures to achieve target parameters for stripping and coal mining for the next five years, and specific ‘road maps’ for each investment project in the industry by the end of August. They should mandatorily stipulate mechanisms for the introduction of modern technologies and equipment with an eye to the best international practices that ensure a reduction in the cost of coal mining and mining safety.
The President placed a particular emphasis on the implementation of two new investment projects on the construction of the Angren and the Nish-Bash mines. Their total cost exceeds $340 million. Therefore, Uzbekistan intends to attract investments from international financial institutions and foreign government financial organizations.
In order to accelerate the upgrade of existing facilities, Shavkat Mirziyoyev released the company from customs payments for imported mining and transport equipment, technological equipment, vehicles, materials, spare parts and components, software, technical and project documentation, which are not produced in the republic, by December 31, 2021.
The program assigns a big part to staff training for the coal industry. The Ministry of Higher Education and core agencies are assigned to determine the list of subject areas and specialties the industry needs, indicating specific universities and colleges that will be engaged in the training of new staff, by the end of August.
It is also planned to seriously revise educational standards, curricula and programs, taking into account modern requirements and international experience, with mandatory training, practice and internship at enterprises of the industry. There is another important point. The industry will now have a mechanism to control and strengthen the responsibility of executives of educational institutions for employing their graduates at Uzbekugol enterprises and organizations by the profession and specialty they have chosen.
In 2016, the volume of stripping mining in the country amounted to 20.9 million cubic meters against 14.2 million cubic meters in 2012. Coal production increased by 125,000 tons and amounted to 3.9 million tons, the growth rates of commodity products in the industry reached 11, 2%.