EU and FAO mark support to over 800 most vulnerable IDP families in Georgia

Published in Economics
Wednesday, 17 January 2018 11:21

Today representatives of the EU, FAO and Georgian Government marked the end of a 2 year project which assisted over 800 of the most vulnerable IDP families in Georgia.

The two year Equal Access of IDPs to Economic Opportunities project was funded by the EU and implemented by FAO in cooperation with UN Women, and focused on developing livelihoods of the most vulnerable groups of IDPs, namely single parents with minors, households with members with disabilities, and households led by youths and the elderly.  The project provided training and over GEL 4 million to help these families undertake investments in mechanization, orchards, vineyards, honey and dairy productions.  In total, 830 IDP households across Georgia benefitted from the project. 

The programme also funded 48 kindergartens across the country, giving up to 10,000 GEL to each institution to create playgrounds, buy bedroom furniture for babies, equip kitchens and heat the buildings. More than 2,700 children benefited.

The event was attended by Sozar Subari, the Minister of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Accommodation and Refugees of Georgia, and Janos Herman, Ambassador of the European Union to Georgia.

Mr Herman noted that: "The EU has been supporting IDPs in Georgia for many years now. We are proud of the most recent project, which has provided funding and training to over 800 of the most vulnerable IDP families in Georgia to develop better livelihoods.  This is a true expression of the EU's commitment to help improve the lives of all Georgians, especially those most in need."

The project was the third phase of an EU/FAO initiative that started in 2009.  The first two phases focused on food security and providing investment opportunities to IDPs.  Each phases supported over 2000 IDP households in Georgia with a total budget of over GEL 16 million (EUR 5.4 million). 

IDP beneficiaries of the project from the various regions of Georgia also attend the event, bringing their agricultural products for the exhibition which was organized as the side activity of the event. Koba Ugrekhelidze, IDP with disability from Khoni, Imereti was one of the participants. He was supported with co-investment of 2 450 GEL for enlargement of his apiary. With the obtained grant he procured additional 30 bee families, 150 frames, 150 honeycombs and beekeeping equipment.

"In August 2017, I harvested and sold 200kg of honey, improving my annual income by 30%. I plan to reinvest the profits and increase the number of beehives even more. I’m grateful for the great opportunity to expand my business", Mr Ugrekhelidze said.

The guests also enjoyed a photo exhibition of the portraits of the IDP beneficiaries.

EU Ambassador to Georgia: Revitalising rural economies vital for stimulating country’s economy

Published in Economics
Wednesday, 21 June 2017 10:35

The Ambassador of the European Union (EU) to Georgia, Janos Herman, recently paid a series of visits to agricultural and rural development initiatives in the country supported through the EU-funded European Neighbourhood Programme for Agriculture and Rural Development (ENPARD). The ENPARD site visits in Kvareli and Lagodekhi were part of the Ambassador’s two-day official programme in Kakheti to explore EU support to economic opportunities in the region.

The EU Ambassador visited the vineyard and orchards of the ENPARD agricultural cooperative “Saba” in Gavazi village, Kvareli municipality. He also stopped at several rural development initiatives and met with the members of the Local Action Group (LAG) in Lagodekhi municipality.

“Agriculture and rural development has an important role to play in the sustainable development of Georgia,” – said Ambassador Herman. “Nearly half of the country’s population lives in rural areas and is employed in agriculture. Revitalising rural economies and boosting Georgia’s potential in agriculture is therefore vital for increasing welfare and stimulating the country’s economy,” he added.

In addition, the EU ambassador took part in the climate diplomacy week clean-up action with local youth and planted a tree in the EU-supported Lagodekhi Dendrology Park. In a press release, the ENPARD said the visits to EU-funded agricultural and rural development projects in Kakheti offered the Ambassador first-hand information about the successes and challenges of Georgia’s rural community, as well as the results of the EU’s support in this sector.

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EU-Georgia Mobility Partnership moves towards better dialogue and monitoring

Published in Society
Tuesday, 13 June 2017 10:45

The first meeting of the EU-Georgia Mobility Partnership Local Cooperation Platform took place on 9 June 2017 in Tbilisi. Representatives of EU Institutions, EU Member States, Georgian authorities and international organisations discussed the mechanisms for dialogue and for monitoring projects under the Joint Declaration on a Mobility Partnership between the European Union and Georgia. The meeting highlighted ongoing projects on legal migration and mobility, fighting irregular migration, reintegration and asylum.

Janos Herman, Ambassador of the European Union to Georgia, tackled the importance of the Mobility Partnership, which remains the key framework for the EU and Georgia in steering migration and mobility issues. He also referred to the need to ensure a reliable structure and mechanisms for the dialogue under the Mobility Partnership and for the monitoring of projects. The latter should ideally involve an online monitoring tool which is also available to the public.

A kick-off meeting launching a new EU-funded project under the Mobility Partnership “High Fidelity – Exercising for Asylum Procedures", a joint initiative of Georgia and Estonia, also took place after the meeting.

David Dondua comments on the meeting with EU Ambassador to Georgia

Published in Politics
Thursday, 18 May 2017 12:59

The European Union’s position with respect to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia is clearly manifested in a great number of its statements and official comments, including in the statement issued on 8 April by the European Union External Action Service on the so-called presidential elections and the referendum conducted in Georgia’s occupied Tskhinvali region. 
Statements like those made by the EU Special Representative for the South Caucasus and the Crisis and the Co-chair of the Geneva International Discussions are totally unacceptable and contradict the European Union’s policy and position with respect to Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

The Georgian First Deputy Foreign Minister has met the Head of the European Union Delegation to Georgia

Published in Politics
Wednesday, 15 March 2017 15:40
Georgian First Deputy Foreign Minister David Zalkaliani held a meeting with Head of the European Union Delegation to Georgia Janos Herman. The sides spoke about co-operation in various formats. Discussions also focused on the issues of priority importance to both Georgia and the EU. The sides agreed to continue close co-operation within the international organizations based on common values and principles.

The meeting of the Minority Leader with the EU Ambassador

Published in Politics
Thursday, 02 March 2017 16:50
The Minority Leader, Mr. David Bakradze held the meeting with the EU Ambassador, Mr. Janos Herman to discuss visa liberalization with EU member states. The parties noted that visa free travel to EU is an important phase EU-Georgia relations. The parties touched upon ongoing processes in Georgia, including TV Company Rustavi2 developments and the Court proceedings scheduled for tomorrow. The Ambassador asked about the future plans of the Party “European Georgia”. The parties spoke about future cooperation as in situ with EUMM so with the respective EU structures in Brussels.

EU-Georgia Awareness Campaign Launches

Published in Politics
Thursday, 26 January 2017 11:24

Today, more than ever, Georgia is close to Europe, EU Ambassador to Georgia Janos Herman stated at the opening of the EU-Georgia Awareness Campaign attended by the Prime Minister of Georgia.
Giorgi Kvirikashvili addressed the event’s participants and emphasized the beginning of a very important campaign seeking to draw Georgia and the Georgians closer to Europe.
“Today our country, with its ancient history, culture, and rich traditions, has an opportunity to draw closer to the democratic European family, to make its contribution to diverse and rich European culture and to the honorable cause of ensuring peace and security.  Very soon, we are expecting an official approval for visa-free travel, yet another tangible result of our European integration,” the Prime Minister stated.
According to Giorgi Kvirikashvili, the implementation of the Association Agreement Action Plan is well underway, and every reform carried out by the Government of Georgia in the process of the country’s European integration, first of all, aims to benefit Georgia’s citizens.
The Prime Minister emphasized the significant support from the EU, both expert and financial assistance, in the fulfilment of Georgia’s obligations under the Association Agreement.  The Prime Minister singled out the project “Supporting the Implementation of the Association Agreement” as its clear example, and thanked EU member states on behalf of the Government and Georgian people.
“As anti-Western propaganda keeps growing, our citizens should receive as much information as possible on the measures taken toward European integration.  This is why the engagement of the Office of the State Minister on European and Euro-Atlantic Integration and the Information Center on NATO and the EU in the awareness campaign is so vital.  Our citizens must be maximally informed on the political and economic relations between the EU and Georgia.  Our citizens should be aware of the concrete benefits the Association Agreement, the DCFTA component, and ultimate visa-liberalization with the EU, offers each of us.  Our history is a history of aspiring for freedom.  Now we are approaching the goal set by our ancestors centuries ago, the goal pursued by our generation.  Life in the large European family will offer the best opportunities to ensure our country’s progress and development,” the Prime Minister stated and once again thanked the European friends for their support and solidarity.
Giorgi Kvirikashvili stressed that European and Euro-Atlantic integration is much more than the country’s foreign policy trajectory.
“This trajectory defines our domestic reforms agenda, its structure and directions.  This strategy serve the purpose of bettering the living conditions of our citizens and the introduction in our everyday lives of the values that have historically distinguished our nation,” the Prime Minister said.
The event’s participants were also addressed by Georgia’s State Minister on European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Victor Dolidze, EU Ambassador to Georgia Janos Herman, Foreign Minister Mikheil Janelidze, Justice Minister Thea Tzulukiani, and Director of the Information Center on NATO and the EU Ketevan Chachava.
The event was attended by representatives of state institutions, the Georgian Orthodox Christian Church, NGOs, and the diplomatic corps.
The EU-Georgia Awareness Campaign is implemented under the project “Supporting the Implementation of the Association Agreement”.

The meeting of Otar Danelia with EU Ambassador

Published in Politics
Wednesday, 25 January 2017 11:15

The Chair of the Agrarian Issues Committee, Mr. Otar Danelia held the meeting with the EU Ambassador, H.E. Janos HermanThe parties discussed agrarian development of the country, EU support in this sphere and future cooperation. “We have always had particular relations with Mr. Herman. He is one of the supporters of development of agriculture in Georgia”, - O. Danelia stated.
Georgia has obtained the significant aid in agricultural development within European Neighborhood Policy, such are ENPARD-1, ENPARD-2 and ENPARD-3. Supported by EU, various spheres of agriculture have successfully developed through interesting programs.
We already have successful directions, such are: cooperative development, agro-financing, agro-credits, agro-insurance, “plant future” program, processing plant co-financial program etc. An important novelty for Georgia is new concept of rural development envisaging establishment of the tomorrow’s village model, concluding the pre-conditions for rural development, one of the components of which is development of agriculture”.
The parties agreed on intensive cooperation between Georgia and EU in agrarian and rural development spheres. As noted, the parties will strive to facilitate to active engagement of Georgian farmers in EU projects.

The meeting of Irakli Kovzanadze with the EU Ambassador to Georgia

Published in Politics
Friday, 13 January 2017 14:30

The Chair of the Budget and Finance Committee, Mr. Irakli Kovzanadze held the meeting with the EU Ambassador to Georgia, Mr. Janos Herman.
Mr. Kovzanadze introduced the activity and the functions of the Committee. The parties discussed cooperation of the Committee with the Government, the National Bank and the State Audit Service. I. Kovzanadze spoke about the practice and future plans of cooperation with international fiscal institutions.
“It was an interesting meeting. We expressed commitment for future cooperation and exchanged information about various issues. We are committed to further develop there directions with EU involvement”, - I. Kovzanadze stated.

The meeting of Zviad Kvachantiradze with the EU Ambassador to Georgia

Published in Politics
Wednesday, 11 January 2017 17:25

The Chair of the Diaspora and Caucasus Issues Committee, Zviad Kvachantiradze held the meeting with the EU Ambassador to Georgia, Janos Herman to discuss visa liberalization, ongoing processes in EU and migration problems.
The parties also touched upon the interests of EU to Georgia, namely on migration issues. As Mr. Herman stated, migration is one of the acute challenges for EU states and EU is interested in role and capacities of Georgia in this regards. The issue shall have one coordinator in the Parliament.
As Z. Kvachantriadze noted, the Parliament works on this issue and migration and related issues are concentrated in Diaspora Committee.
Mr. Herman asked about the action plan and the priorities of the Committee. The parties discussed future cooperation and agreed on regular meetings. “Business relations with the Head of EU Representation are very interesting and last for years. At the meeting today, we discussed cooperation prospects between the Committee and the EU Representation” – Z. Kvachantiradze stated.

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