EBRD to finance modern municipal infrastructure in Bakuriani, Georgia

Published in Economics
Wednesday, 29 July 2020 13:28

The population of Bakuriani, a city in the Borjomi municipality of Georgia, will benefit from improved public transport and services thanks to a €5 million loan provided by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

The financing will help to acquire special vehicles for street cleaning, snow removal and waste collection, as well as to purchase multi-purpose trucks, and 10 modern buses for passenger transport.

The new low-floor buses will considerably reduce emissions in this popular mountain and ski resort and offer more comfortable journeys. The EBRD is also providing technical cooperation funding aimed at training and promoting women for bus-driver roles.

Bakuriani is a small town in the central part of the country. It is one of the most-visited mountain and ski resorts in Georgia and famous for its climate and natural environment.

The technical cooperation will make recommendations for safe, accessible and inclusive transport that integrates the needs of passengers into urban transport services. Additional technical assistance funded by the donors of the Early Transition Countries Fund (CanadaFinlandGermany, Ireland, JapanSouth KoreaLuxembourg, the Netherlands, NorwaySpain, SwedenSwitzerland, Taipei China and the United Kingdom) will help the company improve its corporate development.

“This project will help to improve the quality of municipal services and safety measures in an important resort town. Improving Georgia’s municipal infrastructure, especially in the regions, is of paramount importance for the EBRD. The project will also help promote gender equality across the workforce,” said Catarina Bjorlin Hansen, EBRD Regional Director for the Caucasus.

The EBRD is a leading institutional investor in Georgia. Since the start of its operations in the country, the Bank has invested over €3.8 billion in 252 projects there, in the financial, corporate, infrastructure and energy sectors, with 89 per cent of these investments in the private sector.

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Source: https://www.ebrd.com/news/2020/ebrd-to-finance-modern-municipal-infrastructure-in-bakuriani-georgia.html


EU4Energy: Georgia adopts two key energy efficiency laws

Published in Economics
Wednesday, 27 May 2020 14:57

On 21 May, the Parliament of Georgia adopted key energy efficiency legal acts: the Law on Energy Efficiency and the Law on Energy Performance of Buildings, which transpose the EU Directives in this field. Georgia has continued to implement electricity by-laws according to schedule, even during the COVID-19 pandemic.

By adopting the two laws, the Government of Georgia is given the opportunity to receive significant investments in public building renovation programmes, amounting to €80 million from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and German Bank KfW, €26 million in investment grants and €8.5 million in technical assistance from the EU. Georgia will get an additional €150 million in a policy-based loan tranche from KfW and the French Agency for Development (AFD) for the implementation of reforms.

"The new framework will not only make Georgia's building industry more competitive, but also its households better supplied with energy services, and its building stock better insulated. It will boost the usage of greener energy sources for heating, cooling and lighting," said Violeta Kogalniceanu, Head of the Energy Efficiency Unit at the Secretariat.

The laws were developed under the coordination of the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia in close cooperation with the Secretariat, and with technical assistance provided by the EU supported project EU4Energy for the Buildings Law and by the EBRD for the Energy Efficiency Law.

Source: https://www.euneighbours.eu/en/east/stay-informed/news/eu4energy-georgia-adopts-two-key-energy-efficiency-laws?utm_campaign=info%40euneighbours.eu&utm_medium=email&utm_source=transactional

Presidents of EBRD and ADB Confirm Readiness To Help Georgia Return to High Rate of Economic Development in Video Conference With Giorgi Gakharia

Published in Politics
Thursday, 09 April 2020 12:03

Prime Minister of Georgia Giorgi Gakharia held a video conference with the presidents of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) regarding the possible assistance and financial resources to be allocated to Georgia due to the challenges associated with the global pandemic.

Economic problems caused by the global spread of COVID-19 were emphasized during the video conference. Funding allocated by EBRD and ADB to the Georgian private sector, Georgian banks, and other business entities was noted in particular.

The sides also discussed post-crisis measures and the assistance that Georgia might receive from the financial institutions, which would enable the government to continue the state funding programs that are being implemented today to support citizens and private businesses.

It was noted that the government team is actively working with the local representatives, as well as the head offices of both EBRD and ADB to jointly develop a package of measures that will focus on overcoming the ongoing challenges.

According to the assessment of the presidents of the financial institutions, the fact that Georgia is successfully coping with the crisis constitutes sufficient grounds to say that the country will very quickly regain the rate and positions of economic development that it possessed at the beginning of 2020. Suma Chakrabarti and Masatsugu Asakawa confirmed their readiness to actively support Georgia in this area.

The Georgian side stressed that EBRD and ADB are very strong and serious partners for Georgia. It was noted that the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the Asian Development Bank have financed extremely important projects worth hundreds of millions of dollars in Georgia, including in the area of infrastructure. It was noted that all major systemic infrastructural projects funded by them are still in the active phase of implementation today, despite the ongoing crisis.

The head of government thanked EBRD and ADB for their active cooperation and their support of Georgia.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Regional Development and Infrastructure Maia Tskitishvili and Minister of Finance Ivane Machavariani participated in the video conference.

EBRD Advice for Small Businesses celebrates 15 years of success in Georgia

Published in Economics
Tuesday, 03 April 2018 13:02

02.04.2018 Up to 1,150 advisory projects with local small and medium-sizes enterprises (SMEs) were implemented by the Advice for Small Businesses (ASB) team of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) since the launch of the program in 2003, in Georgia. Around half of the projects were carried out outside the capital city, and about 1/5 of the enterprises were led and/or managed by female entrepreneurs.

The EBRD’s Advice for Small Businesses team connects Georgian SMEs with local consultants and international advisers to transform a huge range of businesses from industries, such as food and beverages, wholesale and retail distribution, construction and engineering.

SMEs enrolled in the programme benefit from know-how and customised advice that enhance business competitiveness and foster adaption to the new business environments.  The programme has a special focus to help SMEs meet new food safety and hygiene standards, while improving the export potential to enable them fully enjoy the free trade area with the European Union – the world’s largest trading block.

“Access to knowledge and expertise is one of the preconditions for the businesses to be effective and successful not only in Georgia, but around the world. We work with wide range of enterprises to support their efforts of aligning with European standards, putting efficient systems in place and fostering innovation and competitiveness,” says Severian Gvinepadze, Principal Manager of EBRD SME Finance and Development Group.

Currently, the EBRD’s Advice for Small Businesses activities in Georgia are supported by the European Union (grant funding) under its EU4Business Initiative, the Early Transition Countries Fund**, Sweden and the EBRD Shareholder Special Fund.

"Congratulations to our partner EBRD for 15 years of valuable work on small business advice! Thanks to the work of the team, we were able to support Georgian SMEs in their ambitions of increasing competiveness, establishing stronger economic ties with the EU, and running truly efficient and modern businesses. The EBRD is a key partner for European Union’s EU4Business initiative, an umbrella initiative that covers all EU activities supporting SMEs in the Eastern Partnership countries” says Vincent Rey, Head of Cooperation at the Delegation of the European Union to Georgia.

“My company Madam Wine has been supported with advisory services in marketing. With help from a local consultant, I set up a new website through which I was able to attract more clients from abroad and signed a three year contract to export my product to Azerbaijan- 50,000 bottles annually. ” says Manana Akhvlediani, Madam Wine CEO.

*Since the start, the programme has been funded by the European Union, the EBRD Early Transition Countries Fund, the EBRD Shareholder Special Fund, Canada, Sweden and the TaiwanBusiness-EBRD Technical Cooperation Fund.

**Donors to Early Transition Countries Fund are Canada, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Japan, Korea, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taipei China and the United Kingdom.

About EBRD

The EBRD was established in 1991 to meet the challenge of an extraordinary moment in Europe’s history, the collapse of communism in its East. The EBRD is the largest single investor in its existing region. With its Headquarters in London and with a capital base of €30 billion and a AAA rating from all three main rating agencies (S&P, Moody’s and Fitch), the Bank’s investments also mobilise significant foreign direct investment into its countries of operations. It invests mainly in private enterprises, usually together with commercial partners. It provides project financing for the financial sector and the real economy, both new ventures and investments in existing companies. It also works with publicly-owned companies to support privatisation, the restructuring of state-owned firms and improvement of municipal services.

The EBRD is owned by 66 countries, from five continents, including China, including two intergovernmental institutions (the European Union and the European Investment Bank). It maintains a close political dialogue with governments, authorities and representatives of civil society to promote its goals. It also works in cooperation with international organisations such as the OECD, the IMF, the World Bank and UN specialised agencies.

The EBRD operates in 38 economies from central Europe to central Asia and southern and eastern Mediterranean and has over 40 local offices.

EU helps make Georgian fashion trendy across the world

Published in Culture
Friday, 10 November 2017 18:11

The EU is the world’s largest market and a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement with Georgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine offers new opportunities for companies in these countries. Fashion house ‘Materia’, based in Tbilisi, is one of them, says an article published by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

Offering its customers a premium clothing line and more affordable products, the fashion house also sells its clothing to various public institutions in Georgia including the army, police, post office staff and many more.

It works closely with the Georgian Rugby Federation to produce uniforms for the national team’s junior players and a wide range of rugby clubs, including Goris Jiki, which won this year’s domestic club championship.

The business has secured financing to modernise its equipment and introduce the best workplace health and safety practices for a new clothing factory, in line with EU standards. This will help the fashion house to take full advantage of export opportunities. The firm was one of the first to benefit from the EU4Business-EBRD Credit Line.

The EU4Business-EBRD Credit Line – a joint initiative between the EBRD and the European Union – targets small and medium-sized enterprises in Georgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine. All three countries are signatories to an Association Agreement and benefit from signing up to the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area with the EU.

The Credit Line helps interested businesses to make the most of open access to the EU, the world’s largest trading block, by modernising their production and services in line with EU standards.

Georgia’s Prime Minister on Visits to Spain and Davos

Published in Politics
Tuesday, 24 January 2017 15:00

At today's Government meeting, the Prime Minister assessed his working visits to Spain and Davos.
Giorgi Kvirikashvili commended the unveiling of a commemorative plate honoring Georgia at the World Tourism Organization Headquarters in Madrid.
According to the Prime Minister, it is a great honor and recognition of the country's significant achievements and the Government's efforts in this direction.
"Quite interesting were our meetings with Spain's Prime Minister and Monarch, the sovereign head of state. We discussed numerous exciting directions in the relations between the two countries. We have nominated to the Office WTO Secretary General Zurab Pololikashvili, our Ambassador to Spain and Representative at the World Tourism Organization, who needs support, so we held a number of meetings to this end," Giorgi Kvirikashvili stated.
The visit to Davos was assessed by the Prime Minister as very interesting. According to him, Georgia is keeping its finger on the pulse of global events, maintaining contact with its friends and partners.
"We held several meetings with heads of states, including an interesting discussion with EBRD President Suma Chakrabarti. Importantly, 2016 was a record-breaking years in terms of EBRD investments in Georgia-the largest amount of investments was made in Georgia, and plans for 2017 are even greater, heralding yet another record-breaking year. Their expectations are very positive," the Prime Minister said.
According to Giorgi Kvirikashvili, very positive expectations were expressed by IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde in relation to global economic growth.
"We had very important meetings with representatives of the public sector and investors. Georgia is in the spotlight, being as one of the Eastern European countries considered by companies planning to expand in Europe, and we had a number of meetings in this direction as well. In this regard, especially important are Japanese companies taking interest in Georgia, which is commendable," the Prime Minister stated.
According to Giorgi Kvirikashvili, meetings were also held with companies specializing in tourism, hospitality, and aviation and interested in the Georgian market.
"It has been a very important visit, and I am believe its multidimensional results will become tangible soon," the Prime Minister said.

Building bridges between Georgia and Armenia

Published in Politics
Friday, 13 January 2017 10:20
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is providing a loan to Georgia to improve the cross-border bridge connecting Georgia with Armenia. The project is part of the EU’s Integrated Border Management regional initiative. It represents another step forward in the implementation of Georgia’s plans to modernise and upgrade its infrastructure to EU standards.
The Sadakhlo-Bagratashen bridge checkpoint is the main crossing between Georgia and Armenia. An upgrade of the existing infrastructure will improve the transit of people and goods across the border. The Northern Corridor Modernisation Project has a budget of EUR 10.3 million and is essential for supporting regional trade and cooperation between the two countries.
Dimitry Kumsishvili, First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance of Georgia, commented: “I hope that our successful partnership will continue and that significant projects will be implemented for the advancement of water supply and sewage systems, energy, transport, agriculture and tourism.”

EU4Business: EBRD holds competitive consulting conference in Tbilisi

Published in Economics
Friday, 21 October 2016 14:56

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) with EU funding under the EU4Business Initiative is organising an international conference of consulting professionals in the Georgian capital Tbilisi on 3-4 November 2016. ‘Competitive Consulting 2016’ will bring together consultants from a wide range of markets, as well as a number of international consulting firms interested in engaging with local partners.
This event will help consultants to build their competences, exposure and network so that they can provide high quality services to small and medium-sized enterprises (SME).
The conference will feature plenary sessions from leaders in the consulting industry and the business world. They will explore global trends in the sector and the new challenges in the industry and the region. The event will include detailed breakout sessions examining new techniques, models and approaches for agile consulting, combining experience with innovation. (EU Neighbours East Info).

10 New buses in Tbilisi

Published in Society
Friday, 30 September 2016 14:42

Presentation of MAN’s new blue buses was hold in Rose Square in Tbilisi. The buses will run on #61 line in the nearest future. According to the Tbilisi City Mayor Davit Narmania, new buses are consistent with European standards, are ecologically clean and working on CNG fuel.
“The new buses are safe for the environment and this is too important. They work on natural oil and they are the most high-class civic buses,”-Davit Narmania said.
According to Mayor, buses are provided by heat and conditioner systems. 27 ml euro was allocated by EBRD and 7 ml euro by – E5P Fund. 

EBRD and EU boost private sector growth in Georgia

Published in Economics
Tuesday, 27 September 2016 16:55
The European Union,  the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development  (EBRD) and Bank of Georgia have launched a new financial assistance scheme for SMEs, to help local businesses improve product quality and modernise their services in line with European standards. The EBRD-EU financing facility scheme was presented to 200 representatives of Georgia’s small and medium sized enterprises (SME) in Tbilisi on 21 September.
The conference highlighted the product scheme, how it works and how local businesses can access the financial package offered by the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA) EU-funded programme. The financing package will increase access to credit in local currency and specifically support businesses that are managed or owned by female entrepreneurs for better access to finance, know-how and advice. The facility will also help local SMEs create an environment that is beneficial to cross-border trade and economic growth in Georgia.
This is the first phase of the planned EBRD-EU programme under which the EBRD is working with local banks to help businesses further invest in improving product quality and service standards.
The EU has also provided funding to the EBRD’s Advice for Small Business to boost the know-how of entrepreneurs seeking to grow their businesses in the European Neighbourhood region. Both programmes are part of the EU4Business initiative, which supports EU projects to back SMEs in Eastern Partnership countries.
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