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A first ever consultation on the emerging World Bank’s Social Protection Strategy was held in Dushanbe, the capital city of Tajikistan on September 21, 2010.

The Strategy – which will guide the Bank’s lending and policy advice on social welfare systems and employment policies until 2022 – will center around the interplay of social policies to prevent the vulnerable from falling into poverty (e.g. through appropriate insurance systems), to protect those that have fallen into poverty (e.g., through an effective safety net), and to promote the advance of households, poor and vulnerable alike (e.g., through skill-building to improve job opportunities). 

SPPic123At the same time, the new Strategy  is being developed against massive changes taking place at the international level, including globalization, increased volatility (climatic, economic), rapidly changing demographic structures, as well as technological innovations. 

The Strategy will stress that governance and accountability relationships will be core to make social protection systems effective, equitable and adjustable to rapidly changing needs at the country level.

At the start of the consultation, Dr. Jesko Hentschel, the Sector Manager for Human Development Economics of  the Europe and Central Asia Region of the World Bank, gave a short overview of the social protection framework, including some of the characteristics of the Tajik social protection system in an international perspective -- here, coverage, targeting and generosity outcomes place Tajikistan in the 'early' stages of developing an integrated and balanced system that provides its population with adequate social protection. 

Participants in the consultation included twenty-one representatives of international partner organizations (donors and civil society) and thirteen representatives of local civil society organizations. Consultation with the donors and Civil Society in Tajikistan is an important step in the preparation of this strategy. 

The basic framework of the proposed strategy -- especially the three pillars covering promotion, protection and prevention -- was well received.  Suggestions for the Bank team from the audience included to:

  • place an explicit emphasis on the inclusion of disabled children and adults;
  • reflect on the changing role of the social worker in social protection systems;
  • draw on the knowledge and experience of evaluations of conditional cash transfer programs prominently;
  • ensure that such strategy development not only stay at the 'global' level but influence, in an appropriate way, local social policy development; to provide examples and ideas for effective coordination of disparate programs so that they can, effectively, form a 'system'; and
  • 'ground' the strategy by deriving what it would imply in specific country settings. 

For Tajikistan, given the high transition of households into- and out-of poverty, it will be of core importance to understand the factors associated with such welfare improvements or impoverishment in the design of effective social protection policies.  Linked to the latter, participants cautioned against the uncritical acceptance of newly released poverty numbers and called for further investigative analysis as to how many people are poor in the country today.

The Strategy will be developed in several stages, each of which will draw extensively on consultations with donors, civil society representatives and government partners.  The Strategy is scheduled to be presented to the Board of the World Bank – the governing organ of the organization made up of representatives of all member countries – by the end of 2011.

Please track the progress of the Strategy on:
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For additional information, please contact: Fakhrinisso Kurbonshoeva , (+992) 372210381,


Adiitional Information:

  • Consultations on the World Bank’s 2012-2022 Social Protection Strategy, Dushanbe, September 21, 2010  English/Russian 
  • Information brief  on Poverty in Tajikistan English/Russian 
  • Change in Poverty Profile in Tajikistan in 2007 - 2009 English 
  • Poverty rate in graphs English 
  • Poverty rate in tables Enlish 

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