Digitalization made it easier to receive services in rural areas of Kyrgyzstan

September 2, 2021


Single-Window Center in Karool municipality / Photo: UNDP


It's only two o'clock in the afternoon, but there are no queues in the aiyl okmotu building, which is not a typical picture for a government agency providing various references for the local population. Villagers used to wait in huge lines for hours to get a small piece of paper with the signature of a relevant specialist.

Here, in the rural district of Karool, Uzgen district, people have already forgotten about the endless queues from one office to another in an attempt to get a reference or state certificate. In 2018, the "Single Window" service center was established in the municipality building.

Any certificate – in two minutes

The necessary documents can now be obtained in the single-window center in a matter of minutes. Taxes can also be paid there, which saves time for entrepreneurs.

"We wanted to make people's lives easier by simplifying municipal services. Previously, people had to waste their time to get the necessary document, some even had to come back the next day. People had no trust towards authorities and were angry because of the long lines,” says Almash Mamatjunus Kizi, ICT specialist in Karool village councils.

Karool municipality unites four villages with a total population of 17 thousand people. It is quite a small settlement compared to other densely populated villages of Uzgen district. Residents are mainly engaged in agriculture. Now, it does not require much time to obtain a document certifying proof of address, family composition or fill out a tax declaration.

Moreover, the leadership of the village councils went even further by opening a WhatsApp number as an attempt to continue simplifying municipal services. Thus, residents can message if they need advice on the documentation. They can also report a flood or other problems in the village. Physical contact with civil servants is kept to a minimum.

"I come from Sheraly village. The service has become much better and receiving government services is no longer a headache. The necessary documents are issued almost instantly. Previously, it took a lot of time for the administrators to find the necessary papers and re-read their registers. Now they open the computer, give you what you need and let you go," says Uultai Matieva, a visitor who arrived in the afternoon.

Financial support as an investment for future

UNDP helped to fundamentally reorganize the work of the local administration by purchasing the office equipment, renovating the premises, and providing training for specialists as a part of its project "Integrated Development of Osh province" funded by the Russian Federation. All services are rendered on the basis of business processes using the "Single Window" method with the automated document control system and the automated information system "Ayil".

“Computerization has made the staff's work much easier,” says Orozaly Rysaliyev, Deputy Head of the village councils in Karool AO. - A lot of things had to be written by hand, however, with the introduction of the information systems, this is all in the past. The main thing is that we have managed to make life easier for regular people. The local residents are very happy," he shares.

Digitalization of the regions: the faster the better

Karool's experience was recognized as successful by many independent experts and state officials and picked up by many other municipalities in the region. The relevant specialists from other districts came to observe the benefits of digitalization and ask for advice on replication. Over the past couple of years, similar systems have appeared in almost all neighbouring village councils.