Wednesday, 10 October 2018 12:40

In rural areas in Egypt, there has been a marked shift from the use of agriculture residues and dung cakes for cooking, baking and water heating to the use of kerosene and LPG cylinders (butane gas). About 55% of households use LPG cylinder; about 69% use kerosene and about 17% use agricultural residues.

The recent surveys carried out in 1700 households in rural areas of Assuit Governorate and 1500 households in Fayoum have indicated that in average 2-3 LPG cylinders and 20-25 liters of kerosene is used per month for cooking and water heating in each household.  The amount of agricultural residues used is about 50 bundles (about 150 kg) per household each month for cooking and baking.

Solution: Densification (briquetting) is one of the means of combating the environmental problems related to the uncontrolled burning of crop residues. Densification is a physical process whereby materials such as biomass are compacted under high pressure into a uniform shape (i.e. briquettes or pellets). The density of the material increases enormously; from bulk densities of 100-200 kg per m3 to massive densities of around 1.2 kg/l. Densification introduces large benefits for logistics (transport and storage), use of the biomass (e.g. in hearths or fixed bed gasifiers), and hygienisation (seeds and insects are killed in the process). Due to the somewhat lower moisture content in comparison to the raw material, the calorific value may be somewhat higher (16-17 MJ/kg). The main drawback is the energy use of the process (around 100 kWhe/tonne).

Hence, the use of anaerobic digestion, which is the process of microbiological decomposition of (wet) biomass into methane and carbon dioxide (biogas). It takes place in strict absence of oxygen and usually requires a (very) watery environment. Although anaerobic digestion can be used for a range of applications (e.g. wastewater treatment, processing of municipal organic wastes), the most relevant for rural areas is digestion of animal dung. Such digester systems are available for use in households (upward from several heads of livestock), but also for larger communities (dozens of heads of livestock) and farms (hundreds to thousands of heads). The digested effluent is a very suitable (and valuable) fertilizer for agriculture. The gas produced can either be used directly for cooking or water heating or, in larger plants, for electricity generation.

The briquettes can be stored and distributed as a household fuel. Based on order-of magnitude estimates of investments and operational costs, the production costs per tons of briquettes are estimated at 140-160 LE/t.

Goals and objectives: In 2012, the Bioenergy for Sustainable Rural Development Project has been established through the Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency – EEAA/ Ministry of Environment, in coordination with the Ministry of Petroleum, the Ministry of Electricity and Energy, the Ministry of International Cooperation and the Ministry of Local Development, with the objective of i) promoting sustainable rural development in Egypt and environmentally sound management of agricultural and solid waste, ii) removing technical, institutional, media, financial and other market barriers of increasing the use of biomass energy, iii) reducing the negative environmental impacts associated with the use of fossil and waste.

Implementation: The project received partial funding from the GEF, in cooperation with the United Nations Development Program and the Ministry of State for Environmental Affairs.

The project supports poor villages at the two levels; individual - for each family and community level - through cooperation with NGOs. Geographically, the project has focused on the villages of Al-Mazaty in Fayoum Governorate and Awlad Elias in Assiut Governorate. As Assuit and Fayoum have the lowest human development index in Egypt and the highest unemployment.

In the first phase, the project built 100 units in Assuit and Fayoum. All units of the 1st stage are fully financed by the project to disseminate the idea and make real and concrete project/ units for the eyes of the farmers to believe and see benefits. They are distributed widely in the two selected villages in the targeted governorates. They fully attracted the beneficiaries and their neighbors as potential beneficiaries. During the installation of the units, a group of engineers and masons are trained in the field are capable to provide the same service to find one of the main factors of the market, namely, the service providers.

In the second phase, the project built 1300 units in all Egyptian governorates. The units are partially financed by the beneficiaries themselves as a second step towards the maturity of market. The beneficiaries are requested to provide his animal waste as well as digging a pit and providing a list of material; bricks, sand and two helpers in unskilled workers. During this phase more than 20 start-up companies were registered after training their engineers and masons to be real entrepreneurs capable to provide the service professionally and meet the market requirements.

Achievements:

  • The Bioenergy Development Fund (BDF) successfully established and launched.
  • Developed and adopted product standards and quality control mechanisms with other initiatives coordinating financial and fiscal incentive mechanisms to facilitate sustainable development of bioenergy technologies.
  • Developed an adequate legal and regulatory framework for technical standards, quality control and business relations between the commercial or semi-commercial bioenergy service providers and their customers.
  • Enhanced capacity of the local supply chain to market and deliver sustainable rural bioenergy products and services.
  • Provided an alternative cost-effective energy source to rural population compared to competing energy sources.
  • The local environment is improved (parasites are sterilized during the biomass fermentation process, so health conditions are improved particularly poor farmers and their families).
  • The project enhanced awareness of the general public through programs and articles in public media and workshops.

Partners: The Global Environment Facility (GEF), the Egyptian Government, UNDP, the Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency, in coordination with the Ministry of Petroleum, the Ministry of Electricity and Energy, the Ministry of International Cooperation and the Ministry of Local Development.

Contact details: 
Mailing Address: South-South Development Academy: 6th Ibn Maysser st., off Mahmoud Azmy st., Zamalek
Tel: +20 2737 5086/7/8/9
Fax: +20 27375084 ext. 127
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Sunday, 23 September 2018 12:56

Solution: Community Eco-paper product is an environmentally friendly technology of making paper using plants refuses by rural communities in Egypt.

Goals and objectives: In Egypt, economically disadvantaged urban and rural dwellers suffer from a severe lack of employment opportunities both in urban and rural areas. While the negative impacts of unemployment weigh heavy on Egyptian society, the country also faces significant environmental problems, some of which are attributable to the disposal of plant waste. Farmers, unable to rid themselves of plant refuse such as rice straw, banana stalks and river flowers, resort to burning these goods, which contributes to the overwhelming problem of pollution. Overall, there has been little effort to reform this practice because village communities lack environmental awareness and knowledge of alternative uses for agricultural refuse. Therefore, the projects of developing papermaking centers are to address, in a creative and integrated way, the issue of unemployment and environmental pollution from agricultural waste.

Implementation: In 2005, El Nafeza (Window) center, an Egyptian non-profit foundation, came up with Community Eco-paper, reviving the traditional of making paper using plants refuses, sun and natural colors.

The process of making papers through the agriculture wastes in El Nafeza:

  • Firstly, they get the rice straw from the farmers then it left in water for two days, after that they boil the rice straw from two to three hours.
  • Secondly, they lay the rice straw in the machine for the chopping.

Finally, the paper left on the wall till it dry, the paper can be left white or colored.

El-Nafeza innovative approach engage people in the development of their communities, introducing creative ways of dealing with the environment and unemployment. This happened through empowering marginalized groups (especially women and disabled young people) through creating untraditional job opportunities in the field of arty handmade paper. Also, through raising the level of environmental awareness about the efficient use of the recycled agricultural refuse through conducting workshops in the communities suffering from agricultural waste issues (such as farmers who burn the rice straw). El Nafeza is considered as the first center in Egypt and the Middle East in training paper makers as a professional job.

Achievements:

  • El Nafeza succeeded in setting reasonable products prices, so that they can cover their costs and also meet the demand. This happened through El Nafeza’s proving more training workshops for schools, corporate team building outings, Embassies community days, which are another important sources of income for El Nafeza.
  • El Nafeza has trained hundreds of people since its beginning who wished to learn about the technique of paper making and trained them in silk screen printing on paper to produce beautiful and very fine stationery items.
  • As of July 2018, there are about 15 workers working in the workshop, 80% of which are deaf and mute.
  • To be able to expand and grow, El Nafeza is working on a large scale, which including its presence in shops, hotels locally and also its presence in a lot of different workshops allover Egypt.
  • El Nafeza is currently export its products to Germany (Boesner Company) and Canada (Saltmatters.com).
  • was selected as a finalist in the BBC World Challenge 2011 

Contact details:  
Mailing Address: South-South Development Academy: 6th Ibn Maysser st., off Mahmoud Azmy st., Zamalek
Tel: (02) 2737 5086/7/8/9
Fax: (02) 27375084
Website: www.elnafeza.com
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCw1l5nPlOlBE5B3zR5XzwWQ/videos

el nafeza

 

Tuesday, 28 August 2018 12:45

In Egypt, health services are delivered by a multitude of public service providers (the ministry of Health (MOH), ministries of Higher Education, Defense, the Interior, etc.), the Health Insurance Organization (HIO), Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and an expanding network of private practitioners and medical facilities. Even though presence of multiple providers could imply competitive services, in reality, there is very limited or no performance assessment mechanisms or quality assurance. All proposed or attempted solutions for healthcare quality monitor were highly dependent on governments and authorities.

Solution: Eghospitals.com is a website that serves as a community monitor of health service provision in Egypt.

Goals and objectives: The aim of this project is to promote social accountability, informed decision-making and active citizenship, since all assessments are carried out by trained community members. To create sustainability community- based interventions for healthcare Shamseya for innovative community healthcare solutions, an Egyptian company established in 2012, developed Eghospitals.com.

Implementation: Included the following steps:

  • A field research was conducted, resulting in the creation of a set patient-centered performance appraisal indicators and measures that were later compared to international standards and assembled in 116 standardized assessments criteria.
  • Developed a smartphone assessment tool that accommodates these criteria and displays them to the assessor in a user friendly interface.
  • 15 training sessions that yielded 165 active, trained community assessors.

Through this portal detailed information on service quality in Egyptian hospitals and other health facilities becomes accessible to the public. For each published score, three appraisals are carried out in parallel (by independent) community assessors. Also, website viewers are allowed to enter their personal feedback on the website or request that a specific hospital be assessed, both of which reduces the possibility of bias and encourages citizens to participate in promoting social accountability in the Egyptian context. The criteria, according to which assessments take place, were generated following extensive field research involving medical staff and patients, to ensure that important determinants of health service quality are covered. Finally, a document including the results is validated and approved by all local networks.

Achievements:

  • 80 hospitals covered in different locations in Egypt, including Cairo, Giza, Matrouh,the Red Sea area, Aswan, Luxor, Qena, Sohag, Assiut, Minia.
  • Designed and developed the online portal eghospitals.com displaying the assessment criteria and results to the public and a back-end interface for data entry.
  • Designed and developed a mobile application Mostashfa Meter displaying the assessment results and providing extra services for mobile users including calling the closest hospital and ordering the closest ambulance to the user’s location
  • Validated, analyzed and published 75 hospital profiles on the web portal.
  • Active social media accounts with a sustained growth plan, displaying and promoting the website and the hospital assessment results.
  • Partnered with 33 local NGOs in all the covered areas and governorates.
  • Partnered with Consumer Protection Authority (CPA) as a national governmental partner.
  • A field research was conducted, resulting in the creation of a set patient-centered performance appraisal indicators and measures that were later compared to international standards and assembled in 116 standardized assessments criteria.
  • Active social media accounts with a sustained growth plan, displaying and promoting the website and the hospital assessment results.

                                                                                                                                                                   

Partners: Ashoka Arab World, the world Health Organization (WHO), Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), Oxfam International – Participatory Eco-Camp on Achieving Universal Health Coverage Locally.

Contact details: 
South-South Development Academy: 6th Ibn Maysser st., off Mahmoud Azmy st., Zamalek
Tel: (02) 2737 5086/7/8/9
Fax: (02) 27375084
Website: www.shamseya.com
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Friday, 24 August 2018 19:39

Solution: Solid Waste Management Improvement Project is a framework to improve the National System of Solid Waste Management in Azerbaijan by way of 5 steps:

  1. Efficient and stronger legal framework
  2. Updated and improved data on waste generation and composition
  3. Creation of a solid waste database
  4. Capacity building
  5. Implementation of a local demonstration project

Goals and objectives: The Government of Azerbaijan has included waste management as one of the key priorities of the National Sustainable Development Strategy where it has been able to achieve considerable progress in Solid Waste Management, but it appeared that the collection of municipal waste was incomplete. The overall project objective is to improve solid waste management by exploring multi-sector partnership approaches.

Implementation: The solution was initiated in 2009 by the Government of Republic of Azerbaijan in consultations with the United Nations Development Programme. The framework included the following steps:

  1. Enforcement and amendment of laws, regulations, norms and standards & RRR strategies, Cleaner Technology Program, etc.
  2. Gauge and assess waste composition, characteristics and generation survey.
  3. Establish a computerized National Solid Waste Data Bank.
  4. Conduct a Solid Waste Management Feasibility Study and planning guidelines for selection of appropriate SWM systems and facilities.
  5. Gauge feasibility and subsequent implementation of local SWM project
  6. Setting up project management and coordination, skills and know-how for capacity building

Achievements:

  • The project helped to revise regulatory documents on incineration, land-filling, and sanitary norms for solid waste management.
  • The project assisted in the development of the National Strategy on Reduction, Recycling and Reuse of the solid wastes.
  • Per capita waste generation capacity and waste composition were studied for the first time in Baiku, Ismayili, and Sheki, feeding into the analysis of the current Solid Waste Management policies and making changes to it accordingly.
  • An inventory of solid waste sites was prepared and laboratory analyses were conducted in 50 districts across the country. A databank was established to store data on quantity and content of solid wastes. These measurement tools were critical in the measurement of the efficacy of current Solid Waste Management policies.

Replication: After conducting studies in the districts of Baiku, Ismayili and Shekhi, laboratory analyses were conducted in fifty districts across the country. (Not much information on replication)

Partners: Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources, Government of Norway

Budget: Approximately USD 900,000 (2009 Figure)

Contact details:

Mr. Chingiz Mammadov, Senior Programme Advisor

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Thursday, 04 August 2016 21:01

Solution: Agriculture is the main source of food supplies in Armenia and forms about 17% of GDP, 52% of the countries population works in agriculture. 8 out of 10 regions in Armenia are prone to hails (medium to intensive). Every hail destroys around 4-5% of the crops and agricultural products, which, annually is estimated to be around 8 million USD in losses. A hail storm in Ararat valley in May 2013 destroyed 3000ha of vineyards and 2000ha of apricot yield in 46 communities with estimated total loss almost 60 million USD.

Goals and Objectives: The project initiated the installation of anti-hail nets as a pilot measure and new culture to protect vine yards.

Implementation: In 2012, in the framework of UNDP DRR Project and in cooperation with Ministry of Emergency Situations, World Vision Armenia and Regional Capacity Building for Climate Risk Management in Europe and CIS project of UNDP Bratislava Regional Centre, a small scale adaptation project was implemented in Tavush community. 

Owing to the joint efforts anti hail nets were installed in 4,500 m2 in one of the communities’ private vine yards by serving as protection measure against the hail storms.  If for the last 4 years this vineyard was destroyed by hailstorm and only 400 kg of grape was gathered and loses were about 4,800 USD, after installation of hail nets 15.000 kg of grape was harvested from the same territory in 2013.

The ACBA Bank has undertaken the following activities:

  • Identified and provided the list of farmers who applied for the nets/loan;
  • Assessed the risks and ensure the affordability of the farmers involved in the project;
  • Signed the loan contracts with the farmers, inform UNDP and arrange loan provision to farmers according to Armenian legislation;
  • Transferred the amount indicated in the invoice from the supplier of to UNDP within 30 working days after UNDP official notification.

The UNDP Armenia provided the following contributions:

  • Studied and presented information on the hail storm and wind zone profiles of the target regions/communities;
  • Based on the request from the Bank used its procurement procedures for international tendering for procurement of nets, inform the bank on all stages of procurement and arrival of the nets to timely organize delivery and installation to final beneficiaries;
  • Based on the loan agreement between the Bank and respective farmer provided the goods to the farmer;
  • Consolidated statistical data related to installed anti-hail nets effectiveness, provide advisory support, trainings and study tours.

Achievements: Investments into anti-hail net systems and their development gave the farmers the opportunity to avoid hail risks and guaranteed high-quality harvest.

Replication: The solution can be of interest for replication in countries prone to hails to reduce vulnerability of agricultural systems to climate change.

Partners: ACBA (Credit Agricole Bank), World Vision, CARD, OXFAM

Budget: based purely on grant allocations (40,000USD)

Contact details:  
Armenia
UNDP Armenia
Contact person: Armen Chillingaryan, DRR Programme Coordinator
Phone number:+374 60 530000
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Thursday, 11 August 2016 00:27

Solution: Local level risk reduction is the local component of the overall disaster risk management (DRM) system, which along with regional and national components builds the national DRR system as a whole.

Goals and Objectives: Local Level Risk Management methodology is a full compilation of tools and procedures designed for community based risk informed development. It aimed for:

  • Development and provision of an advisory and comprehensive common manual (format) for planning and implementation of DRR activities,
  • Promotion of DRR decentralization in accordance with Hyogo Framework for Action, ensuring DRR coordination and integration into local development programs,
  • Promotion of the community disaster risk certification process and implementation of activities arising from it.

Implementation: The solution was developed by UNDP and the Ministry of Emergency Situations of Republic of Armenia in cooperation with UNICEF, Armenian Red Cross society and World Vision Armenia and introduced with a special attention to building local level risk reduction culture.

LLRM is a consolidation of key data and conclusions on community specific risks and priority solutions obtained in the result of vulnerability and capacity assessment and planning exercise with indication of possible funding sources and sectors, where these sectors can be accommodated.

The solution was tested in 40 communities by UNDP in 2012-2015 through testing and adaptation of the widely used similar tools and serving as a diagnostic and advisory tool for community risk informed development and mechanism for implementation of the National Strategy on DRR.

Achievements: Nowadays, the LLRM module is a common format used in Armenia approved by DRR National Platform (DRR NP) and applied by all organizations involved in local level risk identification and reduction processes as a standard module and more than 200 communities have been assessed.

LLRM may be further developed, reviewed or amended based in its application peculiarities, further practice in DRR and other fields, relations between the DRR national system development projects and the necessity for coordination. UNDP is working with the MoES to upgrade the methodology to interlink it with SDG and Sendai Framework for DRR and then to provide to the Government for adoption. Further implementation of LLRM will insure the community based risk informed planning and budgeting.

Replication: The solution can be replicated in countries in need to enhance the local disaster risk management system.

Partners: 

Ministry of Emergency Situations of Republic of Armenia, UNICEF, Armenian Red Cross society, World Vision Armenia

Budget: 

$800-1000 (depending on how far and how big the region is)

Contact details:  
Armenia
UNDP Armenia
Contact person: Armen Chillingaryan, DRR Program Coordinator
Phone number:+374 60 530000
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Monday, 11 April 2016 21:51

Goals and Objectives: During the academic year of 2004/2005 Azerbaijan National Agency for Mine Action (ANAMA) in cooperation with the Ministry of Education of Azerbaijan and UNICEF launched integration of Mine Risk Education (MRE) into school curriculum to spread safe behavior rules and messages among people living in mine and explosive remnants of war (ERW) affected areas, at the same time ensuring safety of development and rehabilitation projects from the threat of explosive devices.

Implementation: MRE activity covers population of 24 districts, including internally displaced people from occupied territories settled in IDP camps and frontier areas and consists of the following elements:

  • Developing of a national capacity capable to educate people,
  • Integration of MRE into curriculum of schools in border-close and frontline districts and,
  • Implementation of community-based MRE activities.

Achievements: Total of teachers attended during 10 years consisted of 1,200 males and 2,435 females. Every year, 55,000 students in secondary schools have MRE classes. Upto now, 1,044,000 students in the secondary schools have been targeted. Analysis of the incidents happened show that study of MRE at schools significantly impacted to decrease the number of mine/ERW incidents among children.

Replication: Based on successful implementation of the solution in Azerbaijan, since 2009, ANAMA has been providing non-military humanitarian assistance to Islamic Republic of Afghanistan through a pilot project on (MRE) on integration of MRE into the program of local schools to achieve spreading of awareness and risk education messages among school children through teachers. 

In 2010-2012, in Kabul and Parvan education departments, Afghanistan, AMANA provided support to the Afghani counterparts through:

  • Translation of the “Mine Danger” books used in Azerbaijani schools as textbooks for schoolchildren into Dari language;
  • Production of textbooks for students and manuals for teachers, distribution to certain targeted education facilities: 24 000 units of books for students and 1 500 manuals for teachers were produced and delivered to the Republic Ministry of Education and Afghanistan National Disaster Management Authority (ANDMA).
  • Methodical trainings for teachers who should have teach this subject at schools for 800 teachers (in Kabul city and Parvan province.

As a result of the joint efforts, starting from the 2010 academic year, integration of MRE into curricula of schools officially been approved by the Ministry of Education of Afghanistan.

In addition, the Ministry of Education of Afghanistan requested for 40 000 more of books to be send in the coming school year which were translated from Dari into Pashto by the local specialists.   

Budget: For replication in Afghanistan: For the first stage of the pilot project approximately USD 25,000; the second stage (including production of books) required USD 170,000.

Partners: Azerbaijani Government (financial support), ANDMA, Department for Mine Clearance (DMC), and Mine Action Coordination Center for Afghanistan (MACCA), Ministry of Education and Parliament of Afghanistan.

Contact details:  
Republic of Azerbaijan
Musa Jalalov, MRE Department Manager, Azerbaijan National Agency for Mine Action (ANAMA),
Address: Baku city, PC:AZ:1108
60 Ibrahimpasha Dadashov str.,
Phone:(+99412) 561 95 57; Fax:(+99412) 497 44 27
Mobile: (+99450) 322 10 91
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.;

Wednesday, 27 April 2016 20:38

Goals and Objectives: In order to protect employment rights the system of electronic information notification of employment contracts was introduced in Azerbaijan in follow-up to the recent amendments into the legislation.

Implementation: Under the new system, an employer is obliged to submit an employment contract notice (mandatory and for making changes to or termination of an employment contract), which is considered an electronic document, via electronic information system of Ministry of Labour and Social Protection of Population. Employers can hire the services of the portal www.e-gov.az and www.e-mlspp.gov. The employment contract shall enter into force only after the system sends back an electronic registration notice, which must be provided to the employer within one working day.

Since June 2014, the solution has been implemented throughout the country. Electronic services offered by the new system are among the most demanded e-services on the E-Government portal. From June 2014 to April 2016, the e-service "Registration of notifications of employment contracts" was requested about four million times, while "Obtaining information about employees notifications under employment contracts," about 918,000 times.

Achievements: Electronic information system notifications under labour contracts helped to build the most complete database on the labour market and labour relations between employees and employers, which allowed by the end of 2014 to provide another e-service, "Certificate of employment," proof of employment that can be used for different purposes, including a visa application. To date, this service is the most popular one in the electronic reference system; as of April 1, 2016 it was requested 278,000 times.

The establishment of the e-system and mandatory registration of all employment contracts led to formalization of and transparency in the employment relations that were previously in shadow of the official labour market. It also facilitated an increase of revenues to the state budget, increase of fees for compulsory social insurance and better protection of the rights of workers. Using this system, employers can arrange for mandatory insurance of their employees.

Other agencies benefiting from the system:

• Ministry of Education – ranks higher-education providers and tracks the employment of graduates of these institutions through this system;

• Ministry of Taxes uses this system to carry out desk tax audits of income tax payments by employers on labour contracts;

• Information on previous employment history (starting from June 2014) of a person entering the civil service;

• Verification and assignment process for TSSA and other benefits.

Replication: The solution can be replicated in the countries in need to legalize the informal labour market.

Contact Information:
Azerbaijan
Ministry of Labour and Social Protection of Population of the Republic of Azerbaijan
Address: Salatin Askerov str, 85, Baku
Contact person: Ms. Irada Usubova
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Phone: (+99412) 596 60 96

Wednesday, 27 April 2016 14:43

Solution: Until recently, the process of assigning state social aid to people in need in Azerbaijan was carried out through special local commissions consisting of up to seven people and incited many complaints from citizens about corruption and non-transparency.

Goals and objectives: In 2015, the Ministry of Labour and Social Protection of Population developed and introduced a Unified Subsystem for Electronic Application and Assignment of targeted state social aid (VEMTAS) in its centralized information system, aimed to improve public service delivery.

Implementation: VEMTAS ensures automated handling processes of applications for targeted state social aid and consideration of life conditions of families, which are estimated by special software. The decision of assigning the benefit is also made by the system, thus avoiding contacts between applicants and officials. The targeted social aid is paid in non-cash form, also ensuring transparency and anti-corruption.

Now low-income families can access VEMTAS electronically through computers, mobile telephones and such, special e-government info-kiosks or via post offices. To provide technical assistance to applicants, post office employees held a relevant training.

Since February 2016, the solution has been implemented countrywide. Over 271,000 submissions were made during the first two months of the system’s functioning.

Achievements: The solution has led to the following changes:

  • Applicants no longer need to collect documents from different organizations to submit them to the ministry, and the use of paper is completely restricted. The ministry collects the necessary documentation on its own through access to databases of relevant government institutions in the unified
  • Accepted electronic applications shall be considered within 15 working days.

  • Citizens receive an SMS informing them whether targeted social assistance has been awarded and its amount.

  • The system makes it impossible for officials to intervene in the process to benefit from assigning the aid, thus ensuring a transparent and corrupt-free process.

  • The system orders bank plastic cards to receive the state targeted social aid, assigned for a period of two years.

  • The system sends an sms informing the applicant about the address of the bank office, where he can get his plastic card and the date

    when the card can be collected.

Replication: The solutions can be considered for replication in countries in need to reform the old manual system of assigning the social aid.

Partners: 

Ministries of Internal Affairs, Justice; Taxes Ministry of Agriculture; Ministry of Education; Ministry of Communications and High Technologies; State Committee of the Republic of Azerbaijan on Deals of Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons; State Statistical Committee; State Committee on Property Issues; State Migration Service; State Service for Mobilization and Conscription; Central Bank; State Examination Centre; “Azərişıq” OJSC; “Azərsu” OJSC; AzeriGaz Production Union of the State Oil Company.

Contact Information:
Azerbaijan
Ministry of Labour and Social Protection of Population of the Republic of Azerbaijan.
Address: Salatin Askerov str, 85, Baku
Contact person: Ms. Irada Usubova
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Phone: (+99412) 596 60 96

Friday, 06 May 2016 14:33

Goals and objectives: In 2006, the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Azerbaijan in close cooperation with the Council of Europe, launched a new transparent system of selection of judges.

Implementation: The system introduced a number of institutional and structural changes:

  • In order to select candidates to a judicial post a new unit named Judges Selection Committee, where majority of members are judges, was established.
  • The selection process is a multistage procedure, which includes tests, exams and interviews, long-term trainings and internships in the courts. All the candidates take an exam in a single auditorium under monitoring of local and international observers and mass media.
  • A computer program carries out the selection of questions from the databank.
  • Examination results are verified and made public in the presence of the candidates on the spot.
  • To ensure maximum transparency the exams are broadcasted online on the Internet, which is also an innovation.

It should be noted that in collaboration with prominent European experts, a new concept of training that swaps trainings and internships in the courts was developed. Long-term trainings abroad are also arranged for the candidates of judges. For example, almost 160 candidates for judges took part in two-week seminars in the Academy of Justice of Turkey, which included not only theoretical studies but also the participation in legal proceedings in courts of different instances.

Achievements: Over the last 10 years, up 2,600 judge candidates took part in 4 selection processes and 307 of them succeeded and were appointed to positions of judge. A new generation of judges that encompasses almost 60 percent of the country`s judicial body was selected under the new system.

Replication: The European Commission for the Efficiency of Justice recognized it as an interesting good practice; EU experts recommended it for study to other countries participating in the Eastern Partnership program.

Partners: The European Commission for the Efficiency of Justice (CEPEJ), Council of Europe

Contact details:  
Address: 1, Stroiteley Ave, Baku, Azerbaijan
Ministry of Justice
Phone: (+994 12) 510-10-01, 537-05-54
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Tuesday, 09 August 2016 11:53

Goals and objectives: In order to ensure transparency and public supervision over the penitentiary institutions, the Ministry of Justice established the Public Committee ensuring the public control over the Penitentiary System in Azerbaijan in 2006.

Implementation: The Committee is composed of prominent human rights defenders and NGO members and is appointed for a five-year term. The composition of the committee is formed by the Election Commission of Ministry on the basis of proposals and the programs presented by the human rights organizations that are eager to take part in the work of Committee.

The new approach in paroling the convicts has the following features:

  • Transparency and openness in the justice sector;
  • Raising legal awareness of prisoners;
  • Improving conditions of prisoners;
  • Improving conditions of penitentiary establishments.

Having special passes issued by the Minister of Justice, the members of the Committee carry out systematic visits and enjoy free access to any penitentiary institution without a preliminary notification.

With view to modernization of penitentiary system and its infrastructure, the Public Committee pays much attention to the improvement of detention conditions of prisoners, medical care and other services, as well as to the correction process of prisoners.

As a result of visits the Committee presents its reports and recommendations to the Ministry of Justice to take necessary measures to improve the conditions and also informs the general public.

Among other duties, the members of the Committee participate in media conferences, “open door days” held by the Ministry of Justice, meetings of the Ministry board, examinations regarding recruitment to the justice bodies (tests and interviews) and deliver lectures at the Justice Academy.

Achievements: the Committee has rendered legal aid to approximately 1600 prisoners on different matters, held educative events (different trainings, seminars and etc.) in places of deprivation of liberty, enriched library funds of penitentiary establishments with legal and art literature, closely participated in execution of amnesty and pardon acts.

Replication: The solution can be replicated in the countries with similar penitentiary systems, in particular, the countries that inherited the old Soviet penitentiary approach.

Contact details:  
Address: Baku, Azerbaijan
The Ministry of Justice
Phone: (+994 12) 510 10 01
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Tuesday, 09 August 2016 01:12

Solution: Before 2013 parole of convicts in the justice system in Azerbaijan depended on discretion of a head of a penitentiary facility either to let it go further to a court or reject.

Goals and objectives: Since then, with a view to protection of rights of prisoners, their correction and social adaptation and public participation in these processes the Ministry of Justice adopted a decree to expand implementation of the release on parole by setting up a special Commission.

Implementation: The Commission is composed of experienced senior officials of the Ministry and the Penitentiary Service and public representatives, including human rights defenders and psychologists. The Commission regularly visits penitentiary institutions, holds individual meetings with prisoners, studies their case and if decides expedient, lodges file to the court seeking the release on parole. It also provides legal assistance and necessary clarifications.

The new approach in paroling the convicts has the following features:

  • Social adaptation of convicts;
  • Transparency in reviewing their cases;
  • Individual approach to each prisoner;
  • Victim satisfaction;
  • Reduces the numbers of repeat offenders.

The Commission has set up a new practice of inviting parents, close relatives of the convicts together with victims to take part at its sessions and interviews. The latter has been a particular importance as the reconciliation between victims and their families living in small communities contributes to prevention of tension and revenge cases. This practice has proved to be an effective way of social rehabilitation of a convict and had a great role in minimizing the number of repeat offenders. During a short period time transparency, openness and rule of law in decisions relating to releases on parole have been improved.

Achievements: By now out of 5,146 cases examined by the Commission since 2013 96.2 percent has been satisfied by the courts.

Replication: The solution can be replicated in the countries with similar penitentiary systems, in particular, the countries that inherited the old Soviet penitentiary approach.

Contact details: 
Address: Baku, Azerbaijan
The Ministry of Justice
Phone: (+994 12) 510 10 01
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.