The meeting of Tamar Khulordava with the Hungarian Ambassador
The Chair of the EU Integration Committee, Ms. Tamar Khulordava held the meeting with the Ambassador of Hungary, H.E. Sandor Sabo. The Ambassador emphasized importance of the visit of the Parliamentary Delegation to USA and estimated it as success of Georgian diplomacy. The parties spoke about historical friendship and cooperation between Georgia and Hungary.
The Ambassador Sabo expressed intact support to EU integration of Georgia. The parties discussed the inter-Committee cooperation perspectives. The Ambassador invited the Committee to Hungary.
The Georgian Foreign Minister has held a farewell meeting with the Hungarian Ambassador
Georgian Foreign Minister Mikheil Janelidze held a meeting with Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Hungary to Georgia Sándor Szabó who completed his term of office in Georgia.
The sides discussed issues on the agenda of bilateral relations between Georgia and Hungary. Special mention was made of the increasing dynamic of interaction in various areas and the people-to-people contacts, which, according to the Minister, are further encouraged by direct flights between Georgia and Hungary.
Special attention was paid to Georgia’s tangible progress on the path of integration with NATO and the EU. Sándor Szabó, for his part, reaffirmed Hungary’s commitment to remain the firm supporter of Georgia’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and Euro-Atlantic integration.
The Georgian Foreign Minister thanked the Ambassador for his contribution to the strengthening of relations between the two countries and wished him success in his further activities.
The Plenary Session of the Parliament
After endorsement of the agenda, the floor was given to MPs for statements. The Majority MP and the Chair of the EU Integration Committee, Tamar Khulordava made the statement on visa free travel for Georgian citizens to EU and Schengen zone and spoke about Georgia gaining its place back in the European family. “Once again, I’d like to congratulate our citizens with recognition of our country and with going back to our European family we aspire to”.
Despite of the challenges the EU states encounter, the hereof decision was made with the highest political support. She expressed support to Ukraine in visa liberalization and hoped for the positive decision on visa free travel for Ukrainian citizens made by EP. The Deputy Chair of the Faction “National Movement”, Salome Samadashvili spoke about the IRI-published surveys and confidence of the population to the state institutions.
The Majority MP and the Deputy Chair of the Foreign Relations Committee, Dimitri Tskitishvili spoke about gender equality and stated that the draft resolution on ratification of the CoE Convention (Istanbul Convention) on Prevention and Elimination of Violence against women and Domestic Violence considered by the Parliament is important.
As he noted, Georgia will be the first country in the region ratifying and implementing the document. The Faction “Patriots of Georgia” MP, Ada Marshania spoke about the problems of affected with mortgage and called on the Government to set up the Ad Hoc Commission.
MPs made the statements on economic policy, construction of new railway station in Kutaisi, achievements in vocational education and relevant issues ongoing in the country.
The sitting of the EU Integration Committee
The Committee considered the Regional Convention on Pan-Euro-Mediterranean Preventive Origin Rules, introduced by the Deputy-Finance Minister, Giorgi Tabuashvili. Enactment of DCFTA allowed Georgia accessing to the Regional Convention, envisaging definition of the country of origin of goods according to the diagonal cumulation. Georgia is allowed enjoying diagonal cumulation with Turkey. After simplified processing, Georgian exporters have the opportunity to enjoy the preferential usage of introduction of production to EU market.
In view of usage of diagonal cumulation with Turkey, Georgia needs free trade regime between Georgia, EU and Turkey with identical origin rules in each party. Enactment of diagonal cumulation between Georgia, EU and Turkey grants additional possibility to Georgia to increase local manufacture through Turkish raw material, to attract export-oriented foreign investments and improve export index with EU.
“Currently, 23 countries have accessed the Convention. Georgia will have the opportunity to produce with Turkish and Moldovan raw material and export to EU and enjoy same preferences as granted to Georgia by EU”, - G. Tabuashvili stated.
“It is the continuation of the processes we have recently launched. We have already reflected the respective changes to the Protocol II to the Free Trade Agreement with Turkey. Accession to Convention will allow us using diagonal cumulation with EU and Turkey and use Turkish raw material for local production to be exported to EU markets as originated in Georgia”, - the Chair, Tamar Khulordava stated. The Committee supported the draft.
Tamar Khulordava congratulated Georgian citizens with enactment of visa free travel
On March 28 the EU decision on visa free travel for Georgia enters into force. “The decision on visa free travel to Georgia was made by the European Parliament on February 2. March 28 is a historical day for modern Georgia as it his opportunity becomes real for Georgian citizens. I would like to congratulate our citizens with this significant progress and wish Georgia good luck on EU integration path”, - the Chair of the EU Integration Committee, Tamar Khulordava stated at the briefing.
This decision is a result of the reforms held in Georgia with active participation of all Governmental branches. “It is valuation of the wide-scale legislative and institutional reforms we started in February, 2013 since Georgia was granted VLAP. Georgian citizens were the witnesses of the entire process. We expected the day when we would be able to state that since now on Georgian citizens with biometric passports are entitled to travel visa free to EU”.
This day and this decision are historical not only because travel to Europe will be technically simplified but because this day is the symbol that Georgia regains its appurtenant historical place in European family amongst the countries to which Georgia always belonged according to the value system, approaches and ambition. She also spoke about active campaign on visa liberalization for public awareness. “We shall take due responsibility to realization of this right. I am glad to see the active campaign by Georgian Government to inform Georgian citizens about visa free travel to Europe and Schengen. All the citizens shall realize the responsibility imposed on us as we all saw the vast time realization of this opportunity took. It is no reality and it is the matter of our dignity how we will realize it”.
She called on Georgian citizens to have high responsibility and adhere to the regulations established in EU. “Once again, let me congratulate you with this progress and I wish it not to be the last step of our progress to European family. We have higher ambitions and we are aspired to make our European wishes come true. Europe is our common future and we shall stand united on this path”.
EuroNest PA Committee meeting
The Parliamentary Delegation, headed by the Chair of the EU Integration Committee, Tamar Khulordava participated in the joint meeting of the EuroNest PA Political and Social Committees.
The Deputy Chair of EU Integration Committee, Beka Natsvlishvili was elected as the Vice Co-Chair of the EuroNest PA Social Committee. T. Khulordava hailed the EuroNest PA activity and underlined importance of cooperation of EP and partner Parliaments. The Committees considered the report on state of women on labor markets in Eastern Europe.
Georgian MP, Guguli Magradze noted that enhancement of gender equality requires intensive involvement of women in economic activity. B. Natsvlishvili spoke about necessity of structural transformation of economy in view of realization of rights of women and elimination of inequality.
The Committees discussed freedom of media in EU and EaP. Georgian MPs, Sergi Kapanadze and Salome Samadashvili emphasized Rustavi2 developments.
T. Khulordava spoke about priorities of Georgian Government in terms of freedom and pluralism of media. She introduced the achievements and tasks of democratic reforms and noted that they serve for ultimate goal – EU membership of the country. Politicizing media-related issues will not improve the process. She called on her colleagues to abstain from involvement in consideration of particular dispute. The engaged experts when speaking about freedom of media in the region noted that in terms of media freedom and pluralism, Georgia occupies the leading position. The delegates discussed the EaP upcoming Summit.
The meeting along with T. Khulordava was also attended by Georgian MPs, Dimitri Tskitishvili, Beka Natsvlishvili, Guguli Magradze, Sergi Kapanadze and Salome Samadashvili.