Hello from Mikheil or reforms in Georgian way. Part II
29/02-2012 09:38, Bishkek – 24.kg news agency , by Aizada KUTUEVA
Kyrgyzstan is trying to adopt practices of other countries for years of its independence. For these reasons officials make numerous trips that seem to be vain as nothing new is implemented in the country. However, “eagerness to learn” remains and foreign trips continue.
The reporter of 24.kg news agency continues to tell about MPs visit to Georgia at the behest of the Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili.
The Customs say amen
The Georgian Customs surprised and made think: what impede our authorities to adopt positive experience? Georgia had begun customs reforms in 2004 but results were seen in five years when association of customs and tax services had finished. Relevant laws were completely rewritten and number of taxes was reduced to a minimum. The government has managed to create such conditions when customs clearance takes 10-15 minutes because of full automatization of procedures. The customs personnel were replaced by 80 percents and the level of corruption is dropping to zero.
Conversation with a customs officer and a businessman is videoed. If a customs officer decided a commodity is safe it is directed to a green corridor. Commodities with risk factor are checked within an hour. Their list is updated regularly and is defined by the Revenue Service under the Ministry of Finances. But this category includes less than 5 percent. There are three kinds of customs duties: zero, 5 percent and 12 percent. More than 80 percent of commodities are under zero rates.
The Customs in Georgia works so well co-ordinated that the smuggling is almost impossible.
MP Ulukbek Kochkorov thinks that Kyrgyz government looses big money because all customs terminals are private. “Only entrance costs $100. Just imagine what money is circulating there. The issue is not addressed as there are many persons interested in private terminals. I think Kyrgyz authorities have to show political will and to establish state-owned terminals,” he says.
My police defend me
Not less interesting was exposure to work of law enforcement agencies. According to the Georgian Interior Minister Ivane Merabishvili, total renewal of law enforcement agencies was not easy. “We understood that there were relatives behind 80 percent of fired officers and this is a big protest mass. But we swam against the stream for the reforms’ sake and we didn’t mistaken. Rest 20 percent of officers resigned themselves: someone understood he would work more and more honest; others didn’t endure thought that maybe they had to put relatives in prison. Today all policemen are aware themselves of a part of reforms and they are proud of that. When I had become the Minister, people following old habit got in touch with my father who lives in suburbs in order to ask him to influence on me when appointing this or another person. But he tried to communicate with people as less as possible in order to be adhering to principles. And only two years after when people have understood it is useless to use old boy network he has begun to communicate more actively with people,” he says.
As it found out the most computerized agency in Georgia is the Ministry of Interior. There are 12 thousand computers for 26 thousand staff. The work flow is computerized. Applications from citizens are scanned and sent to a relevant office. The direct communication between chiefs and ordinary officers is arranged: they can decide any issue via e-mail at any time.
Each policeman has a netbook of local assembly. It contains information about all necessary laws, database of culprits and a list of cars registered in Georgia. It is not obligatory for a motorist to have driving licence with himself because a policeman can check his data by Ipad. Around 20 percent of operations staff is women. The average age of policemen is 23.5 years old. The average salary is around $900. 25-30 people claim for a post of a policeman. Almost the whole new personnel of the Interior Ministry have higher education.
Police are prohibited to investigate of financial crimes. The Interior Ministry doesn’t have special funds; all fines are transferred to local budgets.
A house of dream
Another Georgian know-how becomes opening of houses of justice. The Georgians managed to unite in once center 5 state agencies (Civil Register Agency, National Public Register Agency, Archive Service, National Execution Bureau and Notary Officers Chamber) in order to implement a principle of a single window and simplify life for citizens. All necessary services – issuing a passport, birth certificates or marriage certificates, property registration, business registration and etc – are provided in one place. Dream of Kyrgyzstanis about quick and accessible receipt of documents has become reality for Georgian citizens.
P.S.Kyrgyz delegation left Georgia in inspired mood. They wanted to tell so much in Kyrgyzstan! It has become known that the Kyrgyz Speaker of the Parliament received official invitation to visit Georgia from his counterpart. The Kyrgyz Prime Minister Omurbek Babanov interested in Georgian reforms and requested deputies visited Georgia to share their opinions about further development of the country. But will be the use of these talks?...
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