Khudjand, 19 January, 2012 – Today in the town of Shurab, in Isfara district, witnessed inauguration ceremony of eight new enterprises. With financial support from the Government of Norway and UNDP Tajikistan, residents of Shurab and members of resettling families from Chorkuh and Surkh, which in 2011 received new lands for housing in Shurab, have been given opportunities to engage in new income generating activities. The newly created jobs for 80 people and consequent services are to attract larger and more rapid resettlement to Shurab from neighboring Jamoats, which suffer from land shortages and consequent societal and ethnic tensions. The new income generating activities such as carpentry and woodcarving workshops, confectionary and a bakery, as well as a sewing factory are to transform Shurab’s image of a crumbling ghost town back to its former glory. In 2011, the Government of Tajikistan has stated its intention to begin gradual revival of the town with substantial investments. UNDP Tajikistan is pleased to be amongst the pioneers in this national endeavor.
According to UNDP Tajikistan’s Conflict Prevention Specialist, George Sand, all the new enterprises were created with a great support from local government representatives. Enthusiastic participation of beneficiaries also had a significant input for reaching the goals of the project. The future and success of the enterprises is now in the hand of the people.
Since January, 2010, UNDP Khujand Area Office, with a financial support of the Norwegian Government, has been implementing a two-year project – “Conflict Prevention and Mitigation in the Ferghana Valley”. The project has been designed to assist the process of implementation of a national initiative of the Government of Tajikistan in voluntary resettlement of people from overpopulated areas of the country into the towns and villages with easier access to natural and financial recourses. An implementing partner of the project, an Italian INGO, CESVI, worked in close cooperation with UNDP Tajikistan and local Government officials to bring about the above mentioned positive results in Shurab.