Opinion Factsheet  

LOCAL AND REGIONAL GOVERNMENT IN AZERBAIJAN AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF COOPERATION BETWEEN AZERBAIJAN AND THE EU

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Opinion Number: CDR 235/2010
Rapporteur: KEYMER Gordon
Commission: CIVEX
Status: Adopted
Date: 27/01/2011
 
THE COMMITTEE OF THE REGIONS



- notes that the country lags behind in the reforms to meet the ENP Action Plan in the areas of rule of law, democracy, fight against corruption and human rights. The lack of independence of the judiciary and the media, is an additional impediment to achieving greater democracy. However progress has been made in the fields of taxation and economic stability. At the same time, encourages the government of Azerbaijan to continue implementing recommendations of the EU, the Council of Europe and the Venice Commission;

- welcomes a good track record in using the EU Twinning Programme and encourages the government of Azerbaijan to continue doing so in the future;

- is concerned with the very limited number of responsibilities allocated to municipalities by the law. In practice their responsibilities are even more limited and at best are related to the maintenance of municipal roads, cemeteries, parks and some aspects of the delivery of social care that are not covered by the central government. Municipalities in most cases do not have adequate capacity, training or knowledge to carry out those limited responsibilities prescribed by law;

- calls on the Government of Azerbaijan, together with the expert help from the EU and the Council of Europe, to design a comprehensive strategy for improvement of local governance and local democracy with realistic targets and time-frames for delivery.
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