At the XXIV plenary session of the Senate of Oliy Majlis, answering a question from senators about the size of the consumer basket and the cost of living, the Minister of Economy and Industry Botir Khodjayev said that an appropriate methodology had been developed to determine the size of the consumer basket of goods and establish a living wage on its basis. According to him, at present, this methodology has been introduced in test mode in a number of regions, including Fergana and Tashkent. The test mode is conducted in the context of senior citizens, children and working citizens.
“Regarding the methodology, it should be noted that we focused on four things. The first is the formation of composition of the consumer basket. It consists of about 50 types of products. The second is to determine the size and composition of the consumer basket by region. It is no secret that the level of food consumption varies by region. The third issue in the methodology is the consumption of food, depending on the social strata of the population. For example, both WHO recommendations and daily nutrition standards developed in our country are envisaged. We not only follow international standards, but also take into account the centuries-old traditions and needs of our people,” Kun.uz correspondent quoted Botir Khodjayev as saying.
Botir Khodjaev clarified that these figures so far concern Fergana and Tashkent regions and added that not all segments of the population should take them for granted. In addition, the minister noted why the results of the experiment are not announced.
“This process has been implemented since 2019 in agreement with the Cabinet of Ministers. That is to say, in accordance with the instruction in 2018, we developed a methodology and submitted it to the Cabinet of Ministers. Since January 1, 2019, this process has already been underway. Results are determined by the end of each quarter. It should be noted that this technique is not widely used in the international practice. This is mainly the practice used in some CIS countries, such as Kazakhstan, Russia and several other countries. According to Russian experience, it took 10 years to determine a living wage and establish a minimum wage.
In general, the consumer basket and the cost of living are interconnected. We are currently conducting a research on whether to pass such a law. We need to first determine the consumer basket and establish a living wage on its basis. The purpose of the test mode is to improve the methodology,” Botir Khodjayev says.
As the Minister of Economy states, inflation will also be taken into account when determining the consumer basket and the minimum subsistence level. On this basis, the Ministry has so far refrained from giving a certain conclusion, the test results will be submitted to the Cabinet of Ministers.