Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia, Giorgi Gakharia, within the framework of the visit to the People’s Republic of China, had a meeting with the Vice Mayor of Shanghai, Zhou Bo. Further enhancing of bilateral trade and economic relations and the Free Trade Agreement signed between Georgia and China were the main topics of the conversation. The Minister and the Vice Mayor also discussed the upcoming Silk Road Forum to be held in November in Tbilisi.
“The interest of the Chinese side towards Georgia is clear and it became even more obvious when several days ago, an Agreement was signed between the largest Chinese company CEFC and the Georgian Government. We examined the Free Trade Zone in Shanghai, which was very impressive and we believe their experience can well serve us. China is a huge market for our export, its share is increasing and we should pay even more attention to the related issues. I believe such meetings are of mutual benefit since we establish relevant working groups, just like today, which aim to further develop the certain issues” – Giorgi Gakharia stated.
Deputy Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development, Giorgi Cherkezishvili and the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Georgia to the People’s Republic of China, Davit Aptsiauri, also attended the meeting.
The Georgian private sector will soon be able to benefit from lending recently approved by the European Investment Bank (EIB). The EIB loan will be used to provide access to finance for investment and working capital needs for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and midcaps, particularly in the areas of trade and commerce. This opportunity is highly relevant in the context of the EU-Georgia Association Agreement, which includes a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement (AA/DCFTA), the EIB said on 27 May.
The EIB will be lending EUR 22.5 million – the first tranche of an approved loan of EUR 45 million – to a Georgia-based bank to finance SMEs and midcaps.
According to the EIB, its total lending commitments in Georgia amount to some EUR 820 million, including projects supporting urban reconstruction following last year’s devastating floods and for improving the country’s critical infrastructure. The EU Bank has also financed projects in Georgia in the transport, water and energy sectors. (EU Neighbourhood Info)