After the collapse of the USSR, Uzbekistan, in order not to be an outcast, was forced to look for ways to solve a whole group of problems associated with the need to build a democratic state and an independent economy, overcome the legacy of the planned administrative system and the difficulties of transition to market relations.
The difficulties of the transition period naturally affected the economic activity of women, their participation in political and public life. It is worth noting that the deterioration of the economic well-being of women in Uzbekistan is due not only to the general economic situation, but also to a decrease in their economic activity, an increase in the dependence of the social status of women on reviving religious and traditional views on the role of women in the family and society.
Given the subtlety and complexity of this process, the government of Uzbekistan decided to return to protectionist policies towards women. A number of acts were adopted to increase the role of women in the public and political life of the country. Thus, women had the opportunity to take a guaranteed percentage of seats (30%) in the country's parliament. Currently, the number of women in the Lower House is 17.5%, in the Senate - 15%. According to the International Parliamentary Union, women are in politics, currently Uzbekistan is in 51st place among the countries of the world in the number of women represented in national parliaments.
3.4% of women are represented in the executive branch. The Deputy Prime Minister for Women is also the chair of the Women's Committee, one of the first large public organizations created in 1991 by government decree. The chairmen of women's field committees are at the same time deputy khokims (heads) of the relevant regions or districts, cities. In the judicial authorities of Uzbekistan, women are relatively more represented than in other branches of government - 22.7%. In the bodies of legislative and representative power, 12.3%, in the executive bodies of power, 15.3%.
However, today it is clear that only the participation of women in administrative bodies cannot ensure an increase in public interest in the problems of women. According to experts, more important in this respect is the proportion of women holding high positions and participating in government decision-making in the government and parliament. From this point of view, experts believe, the role of women in Uzbekistan remains not the main one, since in most cases they occupy not the most significant posts. That is, in any case, the status of women in society actually remains unchanged. This circumstance leads to the fact that they have less economic power and opportunities.
The existing imbalance of opportunities at the top has its continuation among ordinary people. For example, it is not a secret for anyone today that the payment for women's labor is lower than for men (in Uzbekistan women receive wages, averaging 80% of men's wages). This leads to limited opportunities for women in the field of self-education and personal development. On the other hand, women do not always have the right to manage their wages and decisions about how to use their incomes are taken by the majority of women with their husbands or other relatives. Here it is appropriate to dwell on the problem of employment. The percentage of women who have received the official status of the unemployed is today 58-60%. The bulk of unemployed women live in rural areas. The problems of employment of women in the countryside and in some poorly developed regions of the country are associated with the lack of practical and theoretical knowledge among women. According to statistics, the ratio of the number of men and women studying in various types of educational institutions is disproportionate. For example. The ratio between primary and secondary school students: boys 51%, girls 49%. Ratio between students in the higher education system: men 61%, women 39%.
Established stereotypes of thinking, family traditions and economic factors to a certain extent limit women's access to education. So, many families pay more attention and funds to boys’s education, since they consider that a man is the main earner of the family and it is more important for him to get an education and a profession.
Speaking of stereotypes and age-old traditions. Uzbek society is very rich in traditions and customs that play a positive role in the moral, ethical and cultural development of its members and in rallying the nation as a whole. However, some customs and rituals regulate the life of society and determine the standards of behavior, the degree of intervention in the personal life of each. The customs and requirements of their observance put the woman in particular in a subordinate position. The upbringing of girls in the family in the spirit of obedience to the elders and the husband is still preserved, this is especially pronounced in the village. Although it can be said that the traditional upbringing of girls in obedience to her husband has recently begun to lose its relevance. In society, you can find moments associated with the dominance of women's opinion, although to say that it is not welcome.
From the above indicators we can conclude that even with the use of protectionist policies for women, the problem of gender equality remains highly relevant. Apparently, the Uzbek society is not yet ready to adopt a policy of gender equality. In order to find out the reason why the local population does not perceive the idea of gender equality, it is necessary to turn to history.
According to experts, this is primarily due to religious traditions. The social status of Muslim women in Central Asia and the lifestyle in the pre-Soviet times was shaped on the basis of Sharia principles, which led to the isolation of women from public life. The ideological and cultural transformation of the region in the Soviet era was carried out by force, under the slogans of building a new life and fighting the foundations of a patriarchal theocratic society.
However, the deep power of the traditions sanctified by religion remained. The emancipation process, inspired from above, could not involve women from all walks of life in it and make it irreversible. The Soviet system created a female nomenclature, but it could not overcome the traditional attitude towards women. It can be said that the Soviet style of creating a female nomenclature was actively continued on the days of independence. This is especially noticeable at the present time. And because of this, some inconvenience arose, since it is very difficult for an Asian man to remain under the authority of a woman, and even a woman is not always able to properly use her power. Thus, the country maintains a nervous attitude towards gender equality, both on the part of the strong and weaker sexes.