EU and UNDP help bring life back to Georgia’s historic landmarks
On 18 October, Georgian parliamentarians presented their study on the potential to revive disused historic sites in the country.
Initiated by the Parliamentary Culture Committee with assistance from the European Union and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the enquiry engaged leading Georgian experts and representatives of the public, private and civic sectors.
The four-month study looked into ways to bring new life to historic sites, using their cultural value for redeveloping surrounding areas. It explored policy approaches for sustainable protection and preservation of historic heritage and studied the role of national and local authorities, the private sector and civil society in designing conservation and management tools.
The final report will be published at the end of October.
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EU Foreign Affairs Council: Ukraine, Moldova, and Georgia in focus
The EU Foreign Affairs Council took place on 24 April, with the situation in Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova as priority topics.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba addressed the EU ministers via video conference, and briefed them about the latest developments on the ground and Ukraine’s military priorities and needs, especially in terms of ammunition and missiles.
EU High Representative Josep Borrell highlighted that in total the EU and its member states have already facilitated the delivery to Ukraine of over €13 billion in military support.
He also updated ministers on EU military support to Ukraine in the context of the three-track plan. On track one, the EU adopted an assistance measure under the European Peace Facility worth €1 billion to address Ukraine’s most immediate needs. EU member states are also finalising work on track two, to facilitate joint procurement. Lastly, the European Commission will soon present concrete proposals on how to ramp up the European defence production capacity under track three.
Ministers were also informed about the activities of the EU Military Assistance Mission in support of Ukraine (EUMAM Ukraine), which has already exceeded its initial target by training over 16,000 Ukrainian soldiers. The EU aims to train a total of 30,000 soldiers by the end of 2023.
EU Foreign Ministers also held an informal exchange with the Georgian Foreign Minister, Ilia Darchiashvili, and confirmed that Georgia has made significant progress in many key reforms. They also highlighted that rule of law, human rights, media, civil society and independent state institutions are important elements for each country aspiring to join the EU.
Concerning Moldova, the Foreign Affairs Council established a new civilian EU CSDP partnership mission (EUPM Moldova), reached a broad agreement on a new framework for sanctions against those who destabilise the country, and on allocating further €40 million coming from the European Peace Facility to support Moldova’s defence capabilities.
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Georgia: EU and UNDP support partnership to enable better waste management in Imereti
The EU and UNDP are supporting a partnership agreement signed between twelve municipalities of the Imereti region in Georgia and a number of waste and packaging organisations, aiming to develop better, more efficient and sustainable waste management systems.
“Developing a public-private partnership on waste collection, separation, and recycling is important for a circular economy as it allows resources to be collected and reused more efficiently,” says a press release from UNDP Georgia.
The initiative was supported by the ‘EU innovative action for private sector and competitiveness in Georgia’ project, funded by the European Union and implemented by UNDP Georgia, as part of the wider EU4Business programme, which promotes private sector development in Georgia.
The partnership agreement was signed between the twelve municipalities and the World Packaging Organisation (WPO), Georgian Packaging Waste Producers Union ‘Georgia Plus’, PMAG Packaging Cluster, and Georgian Waste Management Association (WMA Georgia).
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EU celebrates family connections: photo contest winners announced at awards gala in Tbilisi
The six winners of the Family Connections photo contest have been announced at a gala awards event in Tbilisi on 31 March. Winners from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine take home a prize of €1,000 each.
The EUNEIGHBOURS EAST – FOTOFESTIWAL photo contest, funded by the European Union, invited professional photographers from the six Eastern Partnership countries to enter a set of photographs around the theme of Family Connections.
From a total of more than 400 entries, a team of five top international judges drew up a shortlist of three photographers from each country, who were all invited to the awards ceremony at the Tbilisi Photography & Multimedia Museum, where their photo stories were projected in an interactive display.
The gala awards event was hosted by Pawel Herczynski, Ambassador of the European Union to Georgia, and Nestan Nizharadze, the co-founder of Tbilisi Photography & Multimedia Museum, and attended by local celebrities, and media, bloggers and influencers from across the region.
Presenting the awards, Ambassador Pawel Herczynski said: “Through this photo contest, we are proud to showcase the EU’s commitment to fostering cultural exchange and promoting the power of photography as a tool for reflection and change. The theme of Family and family connections highlight the importance of our shared values and the role Family plays in shaping our societies. Congratulations to all the photographers for their creative and inspiring interpretations.”
The photo competition sought personal interpretations around the theme of ‘family connections’: how does family connect us to our roots, culture, traditions, attitudes and future? Which connections define a family and make us belong? How do these connections adapt to changing worlds, technology, conflict, love and loss?
The winning entries approached these themes from a wide range of personal approaches.
WHO, EU and US donate ambulances to Ukraine to cover health needs during the war
The WHO Country Office in Ukraine, with support from the European Union and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), has donated an additional 33 ambulances to the Ministry of Health of Ukraine to enable the provision of emergency medical care to patients during the war. The handover of ambulances took place in Lviv, western Ukraine, on 27 March.
The donation includes 20 ambulances equipped with a stretcher and first aid equipment. They are intended for the non-critical transportation of patients. Another 13 ambulances, equipped with patient ventilators, oxygen supply, IV pumps, suction pumps, stretchers, medication bags, will allow for the transportation of seriously injured patients to health facilities.
The ambulances will be handed over to hospitals and emergency centres throughout the country, with a particular focus on eastern Ukraine.
“It is one of our top priorities to support the Ukrainian healthcare system, which has come under extreme pressure since the start of the war,” said Janez Lenarčič, European Commissioner for Crisis Management. “We are working with partners like WHO to ensure that medical professionals have the means and equipment to reach people in urgent need of medical assistance. These ambulances will save lives across the country, including in hard-to-reach areas.”
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EU disburses another €1.5 billion in macro-financial assistance to Ukraine
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced today that the European Union has disbursed another €1.5 billion in macro-financial assistance to Ukraine.
“Our support helps keep Ukraine running, while defending itself,” wrote von der Leyen on Twitter. “And puts Ukraine firmly on its EU path by supporting reforms – good governance and financial stability, for example.”
On 17 January, the European Union disbursed the first €3 billion of the €18 billion of promised macro-financial assistance agreed in December 2022.
This emergency assistance aims to provide short-term financial relief, financing Ukraine’s immediate needs, rehabilitation of critical infrastructure and initial support towards sustainable post-war reconstruction, with a view to supporting Ukraine on its path towards European integration. The loans will have a 10-year grace period.
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