On April 7-8, 2010, historical events occurred in Kyrgyzstan that left a bloody trail of dozens of victims. The two-day mass protests and a coup d’état originated in the February rallies against the government’s economic policy that sharply raised tariffs for utilities, due in part to the crisis in the energy sector.
The mass media and internet articles analyzing and criticizing the tariff raise and the resulting social tension diverge in two basic directions
- The first position justifies the need to increase the tariffs as a necessary measure to rehabilitate the energy system of Kyrgyzstan. This position also reflects the view of international financial institutions, and energy policies concerning expenditure rates for production, transmission and distribution.
- The second position openly states the increase of tariffs on energy constitutes a crime against people. Both of these points of view are true in their own way, and to attempt to prove them as fact some may refer to the endless investments to modernize the energy sector here and cite other successful examples of similar reforms in CIS countries, such as in Armenia and Moldova.
However, certain aspects such as the technical condition of the energy sector in the country, as well as managerial capacity to develop and implement regulatory reforms, have to be taken into consideration. Public interests are of critical importance in any sector. Thus, it is very important to understand the decision -making process in the electricity sector. Improving the governance of decision making processes may contribute to the better quality of decisions made.
Comprehensive approach should apply to everything, so below is a brief analysis of past events in terms of compliance with the principles of good governance - transparency, accountability, and opportunity of public participation in decision-making and in the implementation of those decisions.
News releases on the electricity sector are prepared monthly within the project “Generating of public dialogue on electricity governance in Kyrgyzstan” initiated by the public fund UNISON with the support of the Open Society Institute. Archives available at: http://unison.kg/russian/?cat=12