Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili to participate in Georgia-EU Association Council’s meeting in Brussels
Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili will participate in the 6th meeting of the Georgia-EU Association Council, in Brussels. The Government delegation led by the Head of Government departed for Brussels today.
The visit includes high-level meetings in the European Commission, the European Council and the Parliament, and NATO.
Irakli Garibashvili will hold his first meeting today, with President of the European Council Charles Michel.
On March 16, after the Georgia-EU Association Council's meeting, Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell, and European Commissioner for Neighborhood and Enlargement Olivér Várhely will hold a joint press conference.
On March 17, high-level meetings will be held in the European Parliament and NATO. The Head of Georgian Government will be hosted by the Alliance's Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, at NATO headquarters. After the meeting, Irakli Garibashvili and Jens Stoltenberg will hold a joint press conference. The NATO-Georgia Commission is also scheduled to convene.
The Georgian delegation led by Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili consists of Vice Prime Minister, Foreign Minister David Zalkaliani, Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development Natia Turnava, and Justice Minister Gocha Lortkipanidze.
Press Service of the Government Administration
Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili sets out for Baku
Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili has set out for Baku on the invitation of President Ilham Aliyev. On November 24, the Head of Government will attend the SPECA (United Nations Special Program for the Economies of Central Asia) Baku Economic Forum as Guest of Honor.
The Prime Minister of Georgia will deliver a speech at the Summit of Heads of State scheduled within the scope of the forum. Irakli Garibashvili will also meet with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev.
Marking the 25th anniversary of the SPECA, this year's forum will be chaired by Azerbaijan.
Press Service of the Government Administration
VIDEO/Irakli Garibashvili at Paragraph Tbilisi's opening ceremony: The entry of the Luxury Collection, a top-tier brand of Marriott's international chain, into our country marks a new paragraph in Georgia's hospitality industry
The entry of the Luxury Collection, a top-tier brand of Marriott's international chain, into our country marks a new paragraph in Georgia's hospitality industry, Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili stated at the opening ceremony of Paragraph Tbilisi Hotel.
As the Head of Government pointed out, this is another exceptional project for Georgia.
"Greetings, dear friends! I greet our Parliament Speaker, Tbilisi Mayor, Party Chairman, and MPs, our dear guests, esteemed audience. I am excited to be participating in the opening ceremony of this excellent, unique hotel. I congratulate all of you on the completion of this unique project. This is another exceptional project for our capital, our country.
"I would like to say a few words about the importance of this project. Before that, let me remind you that, in 2018, the Autograph Collection, a brand of Marriott's international chain, entered our country and, as you all know well, opened the famous Paragraph Shekvetili Hotel, a truly exceptional hotel in the entire region. Today, the entry of the Luxury Collection, a top-tier brand of Marriott's international chain, into our country marks a new paragraph in Georgia's hospitality industry. Given the positive dynamic in the tourism and hospitality sector, the operation of this excellent, unique new hotel in the capital's center is very important, of course. Thus, I once again congratulate all of you. I also want to emphasize that the hotel's international-standard infrastructure, modern multifunctional complex, 220 rooms, and five restaurants of different categories, along with various spaces, all this allows the hotel to host top-level international events, business conferences, visitors, vacationers, our tourists," Irakli Garibashvili stated.
According to the Prime Minister, the total investment value of Paragraph Tbilisi is 150 million USD.
"Besides its investment value-which is in itself a direct contribution to Georgia's economy-it is also important that this stands for stimulating the development of new services and, most importantly, hundreds of jobs for the capital. It is with special gratitude that I would like to underline the role of the project's main author, Mister Bidzina Ivanishvili, and once again thank him for the implementation of such an important, remarkable project. I would like to thank the Co-Investment Fund, its every employee, everyone involved in the implementation of this outstanding project. I am convinced that this new hotel will soon become a place favored by Tbilisi's guests. I also would like to say that, for many years, the Co-Investment Fund has been actively participating in the development of our country's economy. Of course, I would like to reiterate the enormous volume of charity carried out by Mister Bidzina Ivanishvili-charity amounting to over 3 billion USD, and now hundreds of millions of USD contributed to the development of our country. Also, I would like to point out briefly that, in the past 10 years, some 85,000 new hotel beds have been created across the country, with the total investment amounting to over 2 billion GEL. Tourism is developing rapidly in our country. Last year, the country received 3.5 billion USD in revenues from international travel. In the first three quarters of this year, Georgia has already received 3.3 billion USD in revenues. All this allows us to be very optimistic about the country's development, the economy's development. Thus, I once again congratulate you on the completion of this new project. Thank you very much!" the Head of Government said.
The event's invited guests were also addressed with speeches by the Hotel Management Company's CEO George Togonidze, President of Marriott International Chain Satya Anand, the Georgian Tourism Development Fund's CEO Giorgi Baidarashvili, and Paragraph Tbilisi's General Manager Thomas van Opstal.
Paragraph Tbilisi is a hotel under the first Luxury Collection brand of the Marriott international chain. The total investment of Paragraph Tbilisi amounts to 150 million USD. The hotel includes 220 rooms, five restaurants, with top-category spas on three floors, and hi-tech meeting and conference spaces. The number of people employed by Paragraph Tbilisi and Paragraph Shekvetili exceeds 900.
Paragraph Tbilisi will be able to host international events of the highest category and attract new types of business visitors and vacationers to Georgia.
The Autograph Collection brand of the Marriott International Chain entered Georgia on the initiative of the Tourism Development Fund in 2018 by opening the famous Paragraph Shekvetili Hotel.
Press Service of the Government Administration
VIDEO / Prime Minister of Georgia Attends a Funeral Service of Military and Civilian Citizens of Georgia Deemed Missing after the Armed Conflict of 1990’s Relocated from the Occupied Territory of Abkhazia
Irakli Garibashvili, Prime Minister of Georgia accompanied by Members of Government, attended a funeral service of the military and civilian citizens of Georgia deemed missing after the armed conflict of 1990's that have been relocated from the occupied territory of Abkhazia today.
The Prime Minister of Georgia paid tribute to the memory of the deceased at the Trinity Cathedral and expressed condolences to their family members.
Out of the 20 identified individuals that were deemed missing, 14 are military and 6 - civilians.
Within the scope of a mechanism designed to locate the missing individuals after the armed conflict of 1990's and a war of 2008 August, first round of identification and relocation of the corpses occurred in 2013. To this day, corpses of 604 individuals have been located, out of which 265 are identified.
Press Service of the Government Administration
Georgia: EU supports NASIRA Guarantee Programme for Small and Medium-Sized Businesses
On 14 November, the Georgian financial institution Terabank and the Dutch entrepreneurship development bank FMO announced the first NASIRA risk-sharing programme in Georgia.
The programme aims to increase financial resource access for micro-enterprises and SMEs operating in the country, and is funded by the European Commission and the Dutch Government.
‘NASIRA’ takes the form of a loan portfolio guarantee and supports financial institutions in increasing their lending activities for MSMEs, with a focus on underserved business segments, such as smallholder farmers and women-owned and youth-owned businesses. Often these clients have difficulty accessing finance due to higher associated credit risk and lack of collateral and/or historical track record.
“Under its Economic and Investment Plan, the European Union expects to leverage up to €17 billion in public and private investments. The EU is delighted to see these guarantees delivered on the ground, accelerating one of our core flagships to support 80,000 SMEs in Georgia,” said Nicholas Cendrowicz, Head of Cooperation of the EU Delegation in Georgia.
“Access to finance that also reaches under-represented economic actors elevates more people into economic activity and lends itself to a more inclusive economic growth for Georgia.”
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EU and UN Showcase Success of EUR 5.1 Million Initiative for Private Sector Competitiveness in Georgia
Partnership Sparks Entrepreneurship, Green Economy, and Economic Resilience
TBILISI. 14 November 2023 – The European Union and the United Nations presented the accomplishments of their EUR 5.1 million initiative, "EU Innovative Action for Private Sector Competitiveness in Georgia". Over five years, from 2019 to 2023, this programme had a profound impact on the business development landscape in Georgia. It supported significant strides in advancing the circular economy, fostering robust business clusters, enhancing legislative frameworks, and boosting Georgian producers' presence in European markets.
This landmark programme directly benefitted up to 100 small and medium-sized enterprises across the country and played a significant role in establishing and nurturing four business clusters, some of which have garnered international acclaim from the European Cluster Excellence Initiative. Furthermore, the programme created learning and development opportunities for over 1,500 entrepreneurs and farmers across Georgia, strengthening their business skills and increasing their prospects in the international marketplace.
With financial support from the European Union, the programme was implemented in close partnership with the Georgian Government and the private sector, with the active involvement of four UN agencies: the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), and the International Organization for Migration (IOM).
The results of this collaborative effort were celebrated at the event on 14 November, where distinguished speakers from the Government and the private sector highlighted its impact.
"The EU’s Innovative Action for Private Sector Competitiveness in Georgia has unveiled various opportunities for the private sector, laying the foundation for ongoing economic progress. The European Union remains unwavering in its support for Georgia's private sector, actively promoting green and sustainable practices and cultivating the prospective growth of Georgia's business and industrial landscape," said Catalin Gherman, Deputy Head of Cooperation at the Delegation of the European Union to Georgia.
Douglas Webb, UNDP Resident Representative a.i. in Georgia, noted that the private sector is the crucial player in safeguarding economic and social rights and achieving sustainable development for all.
“Together with the European Union and UN agencies, UNDP is working hand in hand with small and medium-sized entrepreneurs across the country to support Georgia's transformative journey toward a strong, inclusive, and sustainable economy, focused on the best interests of people and the planet. Our support benefitted one of Georgia’s strongest clusters of packaging companies and producers, PMAG, which has increased its membership network to over 60 companies, excelled in digital transformation, introduced environment-friendly business practices, such as sustainable production and recycling, and gained international recognition from the European Cluster Excellence Initiative and the World Packaging Organization. From 2018 to 2022, these impressive transformations facilitated a more than two-fold increase in sales across the entire PMAG network," said Webb.
“Under this project, FAO has supported the local production of saplings through the development of a legislative framework together with the National Food Agency and the Scientific Research Centre of Agriculture. We also supported around 20 nurseries by increasing their technical capacities and providing equipment. Moreover, FAO has trained up to 1000 producers on modern sustainable practices for agricultural production and facilitated access to markets for local products. All in all, the achievements of this project will greatly contribute to achieving a more sustainable agricultural production in terms of quantity, quality, and environmental impact, implementing good agricultural practices with EU standards, noted Javier Sanz Alvarez, the FAO Programme Coordinator.
“UNIDO directly supported 36 SMEs and trained/coached up to 300 beneficiaries across different business sectors in Georgia. UNIDO helped producers overcome constraints related to production and quality management, allowing them to sustainably resume their business operations. Notably, one company obtained Good Distribution Practice (GDP) certification and gained access to the market. With UNIDO’s assistance, Georgian Marine Fishing and Biopharmaceutical Clusters managed to bring together different producers and through joint activities achieved the objectives, which would’ve been left unresolved without the assistance of the EU-funded project,” said Giorgi Andguladze, UNIDO National Project Coordinator.
“Cultivating a dynamic synergy between the diaspora and local businesses, the International Organization for Migration has mapped the high-profile Georgian diaspora in the EU and globally. Through our extensive database, comprising approximately 4000 diaspora profiles, we have actively engaged with hundreds of individuals, exploring their skills, experience, and interests. Our overarching goal has been to establish robust connections between local businesses and the diaspora, facilitating the effective use of diaspora resources, knowledge, and ideas. This initiative has not only strengthened trade but also facilitated capacity building and driven collaborative initiatives. The diaspora's role as agents for local development was successfully pilot tested,” said Sanja Celebic Lukovac, IOM Chief of Mission.
One of the programme's most notable achievements is the substantial support provided to business clusters in Georgia, increasing the opportunities for participating companies and entire business sectors to excel both nationally and globally. The European and the United Nations assisted four business clusters, each contributing to specific areas of Georgia's economy:
- Packaging Cluster – PMAG, the ECEI Bronze Label holder, full member of the World Packaging Organization (WPO). Supported by: UNDP.
- Seed and Seedlings Cluster, facilitating the National Seedling Certification System development, technical support for nurseries, farmers training and Farmers' Markets. Supported by: FAO.
- Georgian Biopharmaceutical Cluster. Supported by: UNIDO.
- Marine Fishing Cluster. Supported by: UNIDO.
Furthermore, the programme helped strengthen public-private partnerships across various areas of business development, including waste management. In 2023, regional and local authorities in both western and eastern Georgia reiterated their commitment to this cause by signing declarations of intent with packaging companies and international partners aimed at enhancing waste management practices and promoting separation and recycling at the municipal level.
The programme also played a pivotal role in creating strong connections between Georgia's small and medium-sized producers and the Georgian diaspora in EU Member States. This collaborative approach fostered cooperation and partnership across borders, strengthening Georgia's presence in the global marketplace.
The "EU Innovative Action for Private Sector Competitiveness in Georgia" opened new opportunities for the private sector and set the stage for continued advancement towards more up-to-date, sustainable, and greener business practices. The European Union and the United Nations remain committed to supporting Georgia on its journey toward a sustainable and prosperous future.
The EU Innovative Action for Private Sector Competitiveness in Georgia is an EU-funded initiative, boasting an investment of EUR 5.1 million. This initiative is carried out in partnership with UNDP, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO), and the International Organization for Migration (IOM), in collaboration with Georgia's public and private sectors. It aims to promote entrepreneurship, enhance legislative frameworks, provide better access to finance, and strengthen cooperation with EU Member States.