Caucasus Business Week #187

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April 3, 2017 #187

April 3, 2017, Issue 187 -

Econo-mix Georgian Economy Shows Higher than Expected Growth Just for Two Months Pg. 4

Exclusive Gulf Air: First Full Service Carrier From GCC Region to Georgia

PR Person Irine Khizanishvili: PR Shapes Company’s Positive Image

Pg. 6

Georgia Set to Ban Plastic Bags

Pg. 8

Georgia and Latvia Sign Memorandum on Cooperation in ICT Technologies Georgia and Latvia have signed several memorandums and agreements as part of meeting between Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili and Latvian President Raimonds Vējonis at Georgian President’s Palace. Moreover, Latvian information technologies (IT) cluster and information technologies and communications board (ICT) have signed a memorandum on mutual cooperation. The memorandum calls for enhancement of Georgia-Latvia cooperation in field of IT technologies, drawing Latvian investments to Georgia, sharing information and knowledge, research, implementation of projects and multi-industrial partnership. Pg. 9

High Quality Plant Protection Products are Available in Georgia

Pg. 7 Photo/ Maria Szalwinska

The modern agriculture does not exist without high –quality plant protection products. Any farmer, investor or person interested in agri business cannot plan his or her business without having guaranteed access to high-quality plant protection products. The competition is annually rising throughout the world regarding the production of plant defense means and fertilizers. Gennerally most active countries in this direction are China, India, Turkey and Iran. These countries are basically producing generics but it doesn’t automatically mean that the above mentioned countries produce low –quality products. On the leading positions in the field of manufacturing highquality plant protection products throughout the world are European countries and the United States of America. Nowadays, in Georgia there are registered more than 700 pesticides. Currently, there are more than 30 companies engaged in import and realization of plant protection products and fertilizers on Georgian market. Pg. 11


NEWSROOM French investors regard Georgia as one of the best places by doing business French Business Association holds meetings during 2 days in Tbilisi. Investment environment and economic reforms were introduced to the Ministry of Economy.

ADB Investment in Batumi Bypass to Improve Logistics, Transport ADB is also expected to manage and administer up to $114 million in additional financing for the project provided by the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).


GEL-Denominated Loans Grow in Value Ratio of consumer loans in retail loans portfolio does not exceed 20%. The dollarization coefficient is 20%. Only 25% of long-term loans (2.3 billion GEL) has been issued in foreign currency. The figure makes up 6.4% in short-term loans.

EBRD Advice to Business: One Year in Progress 100 small and medium sized companies, increased their turnover, generated additional jobs and boosted their investment opportunities, through EBRD advisory services in organizational management, food safety, financial management.


Georgian Citizens’ Card Payments Abroad Marked 88 million GEL in February Payments by resident bank cards made up 65 mln GEL at ATMs and 22 mln GEL at POS terminals. In whole, more than 465 000 payments were carried out by ATMs, terminals, imprinters and internet.

Liquid Assets of Commercial Banks Decline in February Liquid assets of commercial banks marked 5.749 billion GEL as of March 1, 2017 (6.089 billion GEL as of February 1, 2017). In February 2017 almost all main indicators of fiscal stability have worsened.


Leader of Georgian Aviation Market is Turkish Airlines Turkish Airlines is still the leader by travelers’ flow through January-February, but the annual figure is declined to 11.3% (01.03.16 – 24%). The richest company is Fly Dubai, travelers’ flow is grown by 78% y-o-y.

The Profit of Insurance Companies Increased 9 Times in 2016 According to the data State Insurance Supervision Service published in 2016, insurance companies had a profit of 18, 86 million GEL which amounted to 2.63 million in 2015.


Air Arabia Jordan to Enter Georgian Market Low Cost Jordanian Airlines, Air Arabia Jordan will start operating flights to the direction of AmaniTbilisi-Amani. The negotiations about starting direct regular flights between Jordan and Georgia have been successful.

April 3, 2017 #187

From Europe to Europe— Georgia’s Visa Liberalization Path


rom Europe to Europe-a path successfully covered by Georgia. From this day onward, Georgia’s citizens will enjoy visa-free travel in the EU/Schengen Area. To celebrate the enactment of visa waiver, on March 28, the Head of Georgian Government embarked on a symbolic trip to Athens, the capital of an ancient civilization, and Brussels, Europe’s political capital. Giorgi Kvirikashvili, a holder of a Georgian biometric passport, has already passed the border control checkpoint at Shota Rustaveli Tbilisi International Airport. Ahead is a path to Europe in the company of Georgian students, scholars, media representatives, and members of the Government. “This is a regular Georgian passport of a Georgian citizen that I will use to travel to Europe,” the Prime Minister addressed the press at the Tbilisi International Airport, showing them his Georgian passport. Giorgi Kvirikashvili calls visa waiver for Georgian citizens a historic event. “It is a historic day-visa-free travel in the EU/Schengen Area is finally open to Georgian citizens. It is a great achievement and a good opportunity for Georgians to enhance their knowledge about the EU, learn more about the values underpinning the EU. It is a great opportunity for our students to

engage in different educational programs. Together with students, we are headed to Athens, an ancient cultural capital of Europe, where we will hold a meeting at the university and have a number of political meetings. In the afternoon, we will travel to Brussels, Europe’s political capital, to celebrate this great achievement, which is a result of not only the consistent, intensive work of the Georgian Government, but also of the great engagement on the part of the Georgian citizens. I congratulate all of you on this historic holiday,” the Prime Minister told the press. For the most part, the Georgian delegation consists of students, the future generation, who have already taken their first successful steps in life. Special is the benefit offered to them by visa-free travel in the Schengen Area. “It is my first time traveling to Europe, and I could’ve never imagined that it would coincide with this historic event, the coming into force of visa-free travel. I am excited to join the Prime Minister in this historic visit,” Tbilisi State University student Tamar Mirianashvili says. “I am happy to be part of this historic event. EU visa liberalization is equally important to those living across the dividing line, because they are part of our state. I believe that they, too, should use this

opportunity, and I hope that it will be another precondition for our unification,” Nika Markozashvili, a resident of the border village of Ditsi, says. The Georgian delegation consists of Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education and Science Alexandre Jejelava, Foreign Minister Mikheil Janelidze, State Minister on European and EuroAtlantic Integration Victor Dolidze, Chair of Parliamentary Committee for European Integration Tamar Khulordava, Chair of the Committee for Foreign Relations Sopio Katsarava, Rector of the Tbilisi State University Gia Sharvashidze, associate Professor Irina Darchia (Department of Classical Philology at the Institute for Modern Greek Studies), Archeologist Davit Lortkipanidze (Director General at the Georgian National Museum), Associate Professor Levan Gigineishvili, PhD in Philology (Ilia State University), author Zurab Karumidze, IDU (International Education Center) scholarship holders, Startup Georgia beneficiaries, successful new Greek studies and classical philology students of the Humanities Department at the Tbilisi State University, young people financed under the Produce in Georgia program, successful IDP students from Georgia’s occupied territories, socially vulnerable students, and ethnic minority students.

BP to Send Shah Deniz Gas via South Caucasus Pipeline in 2017


P plans to send gas from Azerbaijan’s largest gas field Shah Deniz into the expanded system of the South Caucasus Pipeline in the test mode in late 2017, Gordon Birrell, BP’s former regional president for Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey, told reporters in Baku Mar. 29. The Khankendi vessel for underwater work, which is now being tested, will be sent to Shah Deniz in the end of 2Q 2017 to operate there, according to him. Birrell said work on the Shah Deniz 2 project is completed by more than 90 percent. The gas will be sent in the test mode from the Shah Deniz field into the South Caucasus Pipeline


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to examine the system, Birrell said. He added that this will be done with an aim of delivering the gas to Turkey via the Trans Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) in the second half of 2018 and to Europe via the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) in 2020. Twelve wells have already been drilled as part of the Shah Deniz Stage 2, which is sufficient to start gas production and export, according to him. Three of the 12 wells are ready for production. Birrell noted that work on expansion of the South Caucasus Pipeline in Azerbaijan and Georgia is completed by more than 93 percent. Reserves of the Shah Deniz field

are estimated at 1.2 trillion cubic meters of gas. A contract for development of the field was signed on June 4, 1996. Shah Deniz Stage 2 will add a further 16 billion cubic meters per year of gas production to the approximately 9 billion cubic meters per year produced by Shah Deniz Stage 1. The first volume of gas within the project is planned to be received in 2018 and it will become the main source for Southern Gas Corridor. The gas will be exported to Turkey and European markets through expansion of the South Caucasus Pipeline and construction of TANAP and TAP

Editor: Nutsa Galumashvili. Mobile phone: 595 380382 Reporters: Medea Samkharadze; Mariam Kopaliani; Merab Janiashvili Designer illustrator: Ilia Chrelashvili. Technical Assistant: Giorgi Kheladze


April 3, 2017 #187





Georgian Economy Shows Higher than Expected Growth Just for Two Months

Fady Asly president of ICC

Merab Janiashvili Economic Analyst

According to Geostat, Georgia’s foreign trade turnover with CIS countries made up 497 million USD, up 40% year on year, including exports amounted to 129 million USD, up 75% year on year and imports made up 367 million USD, up 31% year on year.

Averaged Economic Growth in January-February Marked 4.8%


eostat, National Statistics Service of Georgia, has published an early report of February 2017 economic growth. According to the report, year on year growth in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) marked 4.4%, while January-February averaged real growth made up 4.8%. It should be noted that in January GDP upturn marked 5.2%. It is worth to mention that the Government forecasts a 4% economic growth in 2017. «Starting January 2012 Geostat publishes early reports on economic growth every month. The report is developed based on turnover, fiscal and monetary indicators of VAT Payer companies. The mentioned assessment represents internationally recognized practice that is used for reception of short-term preliminary operative indicators. In the fields, where monthly indicators absent (for example, agriculture), assessments are made on the ground of indicators of previous period. Consequently, real quarter calculations may differ from preliminary appraisals. Moreover, turnover of previous months of VAT payer enterprises may be corrected every month and this factor, consequently, preconditions correction of monthly real growth early assessment indicators», the Geostat statement reads. In January-February 2017 almost all components of economic growth increased. In the reporting period exports marked 356 million USD, up 27% year on year. According to Geostat indicators, imports constituted 1067 million USD, up 15% compared to the same period of 2016. In the same period, exports without reexports constituted 289 million USD, up 28% compared to the same period of 2016. According to Geostat, in January-February 2017 Georgia’s foreign trade turnover with EU countries made up 375 million USD, up 15% year on year, including exports constituted 102 million USD, up 31% year on year, and imports marked 274 million USD, up 10% year on year. According to Geostat, Georgia’s foreign trade turnover with CIS countries made up 497 million USD, up 40% year on year, including exports amounted to 129 million USD, up 75% year on year and imports made up 367 million USD, up 31% year on year. National Statistics Service of Georgia has published an early report on Georgia’s foreign trade turnover in January-February 2017. According to the report, in the reporting period Georgia’s foreign trade turnover (excluding undeclared trade) made up 1423 million USD, up 18% com-


Fady Asly, president of International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) has released a special statement over the developments around him over the past period: “Main mission of Georgian national committee of International Chamber of Commerce (ICC Georgia) is to take all efforts for improving business climate and protecting interests of its members. Serious losses were inflicted to three members of ICC by businessmen, who applied to the same corrupted judge in seeking their goal to extort 150 million USD from all three companies. On March 24, ICC submitted an official appeal against Vladimer Kakabadze to Supreme Council of Justice. On the same day, I gave an interview to Pirveli TV company about corruption activities of this judge and in general, about racketeering foreign companies in Georgia. I used the same terms at the March 27 news conference. I know very well that condemnation of corruption activities of judge Kakabadze has exposed dirty games of those, who want to racketeer three foreign companies. Therefore, my statements have inflicted serious damage to their criminal intensions. I have been leading Georgia’s major business organizations for more than 20 years and I have faced many similar situations. I urge the society to carefully supervise these developments, as the mentally criminals, who wanted to make a fortune at the expense of foreign companies, will organize media campaign against me to abuse my reputation. Moreover, they will try to use court system against me and inflict physical abuse to me. I am saying to these criminals: You can hire as many dirty reporters as possible, use your official contacts or even hire someone to kill me, but nothing will make me hide the truth and stop protecting my members from your blackmails and racketeering. When you will kill me, other Fady Aslys will arise against your crimes. You should know that I have already forwarded due information to both international and domestic instances and you will bear responsibility for everything that I, my family members or my partners may be inflicted”, the letter reads. IIC President made a statement against the judge in the previous week in Analytics program by Ekene Kvanchilashvili. He criticized the decision passed by the judge and noted that Kakabade is a corrupted judge. In previous week Tbilisi City Court answered the statement by Fady Asly and noted that the court strictly condemns and finds it inadmissible to spread information abusing dignity of a judge. Tbilisi Tobacco company has also condemned the statement by Fady Asly. The magistrate has imposed a fine foreign tobacco manufacturers on the ground of an action submitted by Tbilisi Tobacco.


When You Kill Me, Other Fady Aslys will Arise against Your Crimes

April 3, 2017 #187

pared to the same period of 2016. February also recorded an upturn in registration of new companies. The number of similar companies marked 3 766 ones, up 2% year on year. Turnover of VAT payer companies applied for early assessment of economic growth made up 4.654 billion GEL, up 14% year on year. It should be also noted that in January turnover of VAT payer enterprises rose by 20%. Economic growth indicators of January-February period prove that our economy performs very well, Minster of Finance Dimitri Kumsishvili said. «February recorded 4.4% upturn, while JanuaryFebruary report registered 4.8% growth. This is a quite good indicator. We have planned this year by 4% growth. First months show that we perform very well. I am able to supervise VAT turnover for the month of March on daily regime and we have very good indicators in this case too. According to preliminary reports, we have good rise in exports in March and this encourages us to think that the planned indicators will be fulfilled successfully», Dimitri Kumsishvili noted. Koba Gvenetadze, president of National Bank of Georgia, also makes very optimistic statements. Along with improvements in foreign sector, we are able to attain 4% upturn at the end of this year, Koba Gvenetadze said. «I believe this is a good indicator. According to recent forecasts, we expect 4% growth. According to existing information, this is one of the highest figure in our region. I believe we have provided correct reaction to external shocks and today, along with improvement of external sector, we are able to attain 4% growth», Koba Gvenetadze noted. To be frank, annual 4% upturn in GDP for a developing economy like Georgia is not an achievement of special importance, because we retard from the developed countries very much and we need at least 6-7% annual economic growth to come up with developed countries. However, if we analyze the past period, when we were dreaming of even 4% upturn in GDP, especially in 2016, when economic growth made up only 2.7%, then annual 4.8% growth in GDP in two months of 2017 should be appraised as a success. However, only time will show whether the Government is able to maintain economic growth paces throughout the year. We hope that the Government will justify the initial forecast of 4% economic growth and even exceed the forecast indicators in 2017.

“We can say, that the year is begun with a good start and moreover, we should be more careful linked to such legislative amendments, which might give a slight damage to the economic growth. it includes infrastructural projects, as well as investment in tourism direction, all that is done for acceleration of economic growth. Today we are the leaders in the region, but we understand that 4% growth is not ideal and we want further increase.”

Giorgi Gakharia Minister of Economy of Georgia

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- Naturally, you have taken a decision to enter the Georgian market after respective analysis and examination. Prior to commencement of operation, how would you characterize the Georgian air market and its workload? Do you think the demand will be growing? - Georgia is a highly attractive tourist destination for visitors from across the globe and its strategic location - on the crossroads of Europe and Asia benefits its ongoing future growth in terms of visitors. Gulf Air studied this route extensively before taking the decision to launch a direct service to Tbilisi and we have noted that international traveler arrivals to Georgia have been growing rapidly; this is a positive development that we anticipate will continue to grow. Alongside this, we are seeing greater interest from the region as some GCC based carriers serve Tbilisi. We are excited to be launching a new direct 3 weekly service between Bahrain and Shota Rustaveli Tbilisi International Airport in Georgia effective 22nd June 2017. With this route we are catering to leisure travelers from across our network but particularly from the GCC region, helping them discover a captivating country – steeped in history, culture and arts. We will be the first full service carrier from the GCC region to transport passengers from the GCC, via Bahrain, to Georgia and Gulf Air’s impressive regional network, one of the largest in the Middle East, with double daily flights or more to 10 regional cities, in addition to select destinations in the Indian Subcontinent and Europe, from our hub at Bahrain International Airport means that we can conveniently, efficiently and seamlessly transport passengers from across the region to and from Georgia. - For a small country like Georgia entrance of Gulf Air is an important factor for attracting more tourists and investors. What are you plans for growing the passenger turnover? - We look forward to working hand in hand with the Georgian National Tourism Administration and various other related entities, to raise awareness of Georgia in Bahrain and across the GCC and simultaneously raise awareness of Gulf Air’s direct link to Tbilisi and our product and service offering that distinguishes us as an airline. I personally have already met with the Georgian Ambassador to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Kingdom of Bahrain and the Sultanate of Oman H.E. George Janjgava to discuss future collaboration and joint promotion of our upcoming new route to Tbilisi. In order to make this route a success we must focus on creating synergy between all parties for mutual benefit – I believe this is a promising beginning and I hope to see us all reap the fruits of our continued and sustained efforts. - Besides Bahrein-Tbilisi-Bahrein flight, do you plan to include other regions of Georgia in the schedule on tourism season, for example, Ajara Region to launch flights to Batumi? - We are always assessing our network offering both in terms of destinations served and frequencies. Our mission is to provide safe and reliable air transportation delivered with contemporary Arabian hospitality. As we work to respond and cater to passenger demand, wherever we see increased need we endeavor to provide tailored travel solutions. Once we have entered Georgia and assessed our service to Tbilisi and given the route all the support needed to grow in popularity we will review other options within the country – including seasonal destinations. - According to statistics, more than 50% of tourists from Arab

April 3, 2017 #187

countries use air borders for entering the country. How many passengers will your airline transport a month on average? - We can’t comment or predict numbers at this time, it would be unwise and misleading to do so. Given the appropriate support from across our network, and over time, we hope that Gulf Air’s Tbilisi service will be popular and profitable for the airline, serving the needs of GCC regional travelers who can easily discover Georgia with our service. It is important to note that Gulf Air’s measured, strategic network expansion over the coming years will see us, between now and 2023, expand our network to serve 60 destinations. We focus on high yield, point-to-point routes connecting regional markets alongside select, strategic international connections. Georgia is one such international destination that will be of strategic importance to Gulf Air’s offering and which will further benefit as our network expands over the coming years. - Georgian passengers prefer to pay visits to Near East and Asian countries in winter-autumn period. At the same time, Georgia actively popularizes winter resorts. Do you plan to perform flights in winter navigation season too? - We are pleased to be offering regular, year-round direct service between Tbilisi and Bahrain giving Gulf Air passengers from across our network the chance to explore Georgia year-round. - Having been admitted to Georgian market, the airline has introduced 25% discount tariffs on Bahrein-Tbilisi flights. How often do you offer similar discount packages to customers and what additional preferences will the airline use for stimulating the demand? - Gulf Air offers regular, attractive fare promotions and discounts via our official website on select routes in order to stimulate demand. In addition to this, our loyalty programme makes frequent travel more appealing and rewarding. Our attractive FalconFlyer Programme, with its innovative incentives and benefits for the airline’s frequent flyers, offers members attractive privileges and value-added benefits such as bonus miles up to 250%, family membership and special privileges both on the ground and in the air. Other advantages of the program include the best redemption rates and the best miles earning system for premium class in the GCC and Middle East region, special online booking bonuses, a generous baggage allowance, three years miles validity, unlimited lounge access, priority baggage handling and guaranteed seats among many other benefits intended to make the traveling experience more enjoyable and rewarding. Further information about Gulf Air’s FalconFlyer programme can be found online by visiting - Which categories (families, business tours, young tourists) and which price segment do you expect to give preference to Gulf Air airline? - We cater to a diverse passenger base and we believe that Georgia’s tourist offering will appeal to travelers from across the Gulf Air network particularly the family traveler segment. - As to long-term plans, three Arab airlines perform flights berween Georgia and Arab countries. Workload of these three companies on Georgian market ranges from 55% to 80%. What are your expectations and calculations in this respect for the coming years? What ratio do you expect to control on Georgian air market? - We are excited to tap into existing and growing demand for travel to Georgia from across our network and particularly from the GCC region. Our offering differs to that of other Arab and GCC-based airlines that are currently serving the market. Firstly and as I mentioned earlier, we will be the first full service carrier from the GCC region to transport passengers from the GCC, via Bahrain, to Georgia and Gulf Air’s impressive regional network, one of the largest in the Middle East, with double daily flights or more to 10 regional cities, in addition to select destinations in the Indian Subcontinent and Europe, from our hub at Bahrain International Airport means that we can conveniently, efficiently and seamlessly transport passengers from across the region to and from Georgia. That’s not all. We were one of the first airline’s established in the region (in 1950) and our pioneering history has built a strong brand – regionally and internationally. Gulf Air is a recognized and respected brand and our passengers, I am pleased to say, are loyal to the airline and well acquainted with our distinctive product and service offering that complements the convenience and flexibility of our travel solutions. By starting a direct service to Georgia we are giving a key market in the GCC the chance to explore Tbilisi and beyond with Gulf Air and I trust that this will be a very positive development for all parties. - Gulf Air operates on air market of many countries. What kind of relations does the airline have with Georgian Civil Aviation Agency and in general, how simple is it to obtain flight mermission on Georgian air market? - We are grateful for all the support extended to us by the Georgian Civil Aviation Agency and various other entities and aviation authorities in Georgia who helped facilitate our entry into this new market. Georgia has an impressive infrastructure in place that allows airlines to operate easily in this country – with welcoming and attractive policies in place.


April 3, 2017 #187

Bins for Electric Wastes Installed at JSC Georgian Railway Administrative Building Georgian Railway has emerged as the first company that has joined campaign – Let’s Jointly Remove Electronic Wastes! The campaign is organized by Enviroserve. “Enviroserve” is an international company specialized in processing electronic devices. The company’s head office and processing plant are located in Dubai. The company has obtained an operational permit from Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources of Georgia. Note that E-Waste, i.e. Electronic Wastes represents a type of wastes that may be thrown away, for example, old cell phones, electronic office devices, computers and details related to electricity such as: electronic tooth brush, ink cartridges and so on. Electronic wastes are dangerous, because they contain such toxic substances as quicksilver, leader, beryllium and cadmium that are cancerogenic substances and damage brain and kidneys (especially in children). According to GreenPeace organization, ratio of electronic wastes accounts for 5% in municipal solid wastes all over the world. E-Waste collection bins are located at entrance of JSC Georgian Railway office and the company workers are able to throw useless electronic wastes into the bin any time. JSC Georgian Railway takes part in other project too: Let’s Jointly Care for Environment. The project calls for installing the so-called Green Boxes at various offices, where the organization staff will place scrap paper. A huge volume of paper wastes is accumulated at the company every day that may be repeatedly processed for manufacturing a new product. The collected paper wastes will be transmitted to the Kviris Palitra newspaper project – Exchange Scrap Paper into Literature!» As a result, in exchange for scrap papers, scores, the so-called seedlings, commensurate to the paper weight will be collected on a special plastic card. Georgian Railway will exchange the earned scores into new books published by Palitra Media that will be issued at train libraries.

Georgia Set to Ban Plastic Bags Production, sales and imports of plastic bags with less than 10 micron thickness will be banned in September 2017, while production, sales and imports of plastic bags with less than 15 micron thickness will be restricted starting January 1, 2018.


Alverd Chankseliani, head of Environment Ministry Department for Management of Wastes and Chemical Substances, noted that the mentioned issue will be regulated by law. Wastes of plastic products damage environment most of all, especially plastic bags that are widely used in our country. It is well-known fact that plastic bags can remain in the nature for hundreds of years because of their chemical structure. They are not biodegradable products and they are hardly dissolved, representatives of the Ministry of Enthronement noted. A major part of plastic bags cannot be used repeatedly and their recycling is difficult, specialist noted. In the process of dissolution (if such a process happens), it pollutes soil and underground waters by toxic substances and penetrates feed chains. Plastic bags pose real threats to wildlife. The wind easily carries them to woodlands, seas, rivers and lakes. Every year about 1 billion sea birds and mammals die of eating plastic bags. Burning of plastic bags threatens human health, because burning process emits toxins, harmful substances that pollute atmosphere. This process drives shaping the heating effect that provokes global climate changes. In practice, plastic is an nonperishable trash that inflicts huge damage to biodiversity and ecosystem. After prohibition of plastic bags, Georgia plans to introduce regulations on plastic containers too, Alverd Chanskeliani said. It is our future plans to ban plastic containers and these regulations will be expectedly introduced in 2018, he added. “We have analyzed this issue, but introduction of so many regulations suddenly will stage much pressure on business sector. This is the next phase. We will think about this the next year and certain legal amendments may be added to the law”, Chankseliani said. How do domestic manufacturers of plastic and packing materials appraise available introduction of the mentioned regulations and what results should we expect? Paata Abramia, founder of GreenPack packing and single-use products manufacturing company, noted that the country records a catastrophically high level of use of plastic products. The businessman asserts that the mentioned regulations to be introduced by

the Environment Ministry cannot resolve the existing problems. The business will be reshaped to manufacture plastic bags with more than 10-15 micron thickness. As a result, new products will be sold at higher prices compared to 10-15 micron plastic bags. «This regulation will damage consumers, not business. Citizens will have to buy more expensive plastic bags. Prices will change insignificantly», Abramia noted. As to prohibition of plastic containers, the country should intensify efforts in this direction, Abramia noted. Currently, a major part of plastic containers are imported from abroad and this is incorrect process. The Authorities have created so many opportunities, introduced cheap loans and domestic production of biodegradable products should be developed in Georgia, he added. Zurab Khachidze, executive director of TEGE plastic products manufacturing company, abstained from making comments. It should be noted that in February 2017 he noted that his company was producing only dairy products’ plastic cups, but introduction of the mentioned regulations would equally damage consumers and business. Paper packs have appeared on the market, but their production is much more expensive compared to plastic bags. These regulations will make consumers pay more money and the plastic bags manufacturing or importing companies will also bear losses, Khachidze said in February. Plastic bags cannot be replaced by glass or paper analogues, because final product’s price will extremely rise. Moreover, there is no paper production or glass production in Georgia. “Price of 0.5 liter Glass container is 50 Tetri, plastic container – 10 Tetri. Georgian glass production is undeveloped and expensive and all domestic manufacturers use imported glass”, Khachidze said. We remind you that the Environment Ministry started discussions on banning plastic bags production in September 2016 after France adopted a new law banning plastic cups, forks and plates starting 2020. In 2016 Chankseliani said that it would be very difficult to ban this or that product at once and the Government was to take into account interests of all interested parties. “Manufacturing of products that may substitute plastic products may be subsidized. New products will be made of biodegradable materials”, Chankseliani said.

This regulation will damage consumers, not business. Citizens will have to buy more expensive plastic bags Paper packs have appeared on the market, but their production is much more expensive compared to plastic bags Manufacturing of products that may substitute plastic products may be subsidized



April 3, 2017 #187

PR Shapes Company’s Positive Image

Interview with Irine Khizanishvili, PR manager for Association of Ferroalloy Product Manufacturers and Manganese Miners, Founder and editor-inchief of the Steps Magazine.

- What is your profession? -I am a journalist and manager of strategic communications. - Your first job place. - My career started at “Utsnobi” radio station. - Current job and position. - I am a founder and editor-in-chief of the Steps journal. I am also a PR manager at Association of Ferroalloy Product Manufacturers and Manganese Miners. - Your first success. - The first success came when I was 18. I was approved on the position of a presenter for morning news program. I remember I was a very young girl for leading that news program, but this was a certain challenge for me and I should not have missed this chance. - Name a business or project you are proud of even today. - I would name “Steps Magazine” which is the most successful product or job that I have ever done. I have been working on creating the magazine for two years. Every diligent person reads and keeps it on his/her working table. - The field where you would never work. - I would never work at routine job, when you make the same things every day. In general, I do not like sitting at office from morning to evening. I have worked at more or less interesting job places that required permanent motion, communication with a lot of people and various events. - What makes a person successful in your field? Besides knowledge, what special personal features are required? - As to the magazine, experience is the most important aspect, but I believe more theoretical knowledge is required in strategic communication. PR manager should be able

PR manager should be able to communicate with all kinds of people. Moreover, PR manager should be able to explain every issue clearly to everyone. Creative thought and positive consideration on negative events are also necessary.

to communicate with all kinds of people. Moreover, PR manager should be able to explain every issue clearly to everyone. Creative thought and positive consideration on negative events are also necessary. - Is is possible in Georgia to study PR these days or international knowledge and experience are necessary anyway? - Naturally, international knowledge and experience are excellent and this is an additional advantage. For example, I have recently finished strategic communication faculty at Caucasus Media School (MA degree) and I can frankly say that I had genuinely excellent lectures. They are practitioner professionals and I have learned a lot from them. - Is PR understood and perceived in Georgia in its classical nature and essence? - In Georgia PR frequently is identified with media relations, but this is an erroneous position. PR management is a very interesting profession that, naturally, also comprises media relations, strategy planning, implementation of creative ideas and events. It is a very interesting process to shape company’s positive image. - How easy can you settle complicated situations and take decisions? Do you think similar cases worsen quality of working process? - If you cannot take a decision, you are a weak chain in the company. Full concentration is required to resolve crisis situations. You should be self-confident and way-outs may be found in any situation. - Interesting episode that has changed your life. - I recall such an interesting period at information agency. I remember in those years I had ceased contact with my friends, in

practice, and I was very young. I had to work at TV station from morning till evening, but you are enthusiastic when you love your job and I was fully devoted to my job. - If not this profession, where would you work? - From today’s positions, I would take efforts in sales direction. - What about your strong personal features and characteristics? -It is difficult and a little bit awkward to talk about myself. It would be more appropriate to pose this question to people, who has worked beside me. Sense of responsibility, working in team, motivation and aspiration for determined goals. The main thing is that you should not surrender and you will attain much success thanks to hardworking. - What makes your employer company interesting for you? - I have been working in the heavy industry field for two years. This direction was a certain challenge for me. Heavy industry is a quite important chain for Georgian economy. Our association unites all ferroalloy manufacturing companies. I have gained much experience in this field. We have huge plans ahead. My magazine is also very interesting. I love each detail of making this magazine, starting from planning of a new issue and ending with reading articles. - What factors make major discomfort in the working process? - I need comfortable working environment and people with whom I do specific project should be also comfortable for me. I do not like working with uninteresting people. - Where do you see yourself after 20 years? - I see myself as a president of one of the large company, successful in strategic communications field.


April 3, 2017 #187

Georgia and Latvia Sign Memorandum on Cooperation in ICT Technologies «Cooperation will Open Way to Exports of Competences and Knowledge abroad...»


eorgia and Latvia have signed several memorandums and agreements as part of meeting between Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili and Latvian President Raimonds Vējonis at Georgian President’s Palace. Moreover, Latvian information technologies (IT) cluster and information technologies and communications board (ICT) have signed a memorandum on mutual cooperation. The memorandum calls for enhancement of Georgia-Latvia cooperation in field of IT technologies, drawing Latvian investments to Georgia, sharing information and knowledge, research, implementation of projects and multi-industrial partnership.

Special regard will be paid to such innovative directions as Cloud Technologies, Artificial Intellect, Big Data and so on. The memorandum also calls for sharing successful cases, methods, resources, including for the purpose of improving competitive capacity, exposing importance of the field and information technologies to wide circles of the society. «We have been long cooperating with IT clusters of various countries. This is an important day, because we have concluded a new memorandum on cooperation with Latvian IT cluster. The memorandum comprises important ideas and issues. The issue concerns sharing of competences of Latvian IT com-

“This cooperation memorandum offers Latvia broader opportunities for exporting IT know-how, and is another step towards strengthening Latvia’s service exportability and development. We are convinced that this cooperation will let us attract even more attention to Latvia as a country of IT experts, inviting, for example, young people from Georgia to study IT in Latvia”


panies, information exchange with such Georgian companies that operate in fields of education, science, information security, IT solutions in our regions. They will be entitled to enter Latvian market», Giga Shubitidze, president of ICT Business Bord, noted. ‘This cooperation memorandum offers Latvia broader opportunities for exporting IT know-how, and is another step towards strengthening Latvia’s service exportability and development. We are convinced that this cooperation will let us attract even more attention to Latvia as a country of IT experts, inviting, for example, young people from Georgia to study IT in Latvia. Participating in IT fairs, conferences and networking trips will definitely promote the creation of IT knowledge and innovation centres in Georgia,’ Gatis Ošs, board member of the Latvian IT Cluster, said. One of the driving forces behind the memorandum is the Latvian ICT company SQUALIO, which has worked in Georgia for more than six years and can share its experience and its vision of what potential the cooperation between the two countries has. ‘Latvian ICT specialists are very well-trained and experiences, which has been appreciated by our colleagues in Georgia. In Georgia’s public sector, the field of ICT is quite developed and advanced; however, the country’s private sector still has a large proportion of pirated software and a low level of innovation. Our specialists in Georgia make regular software audits for various companies that highly appreciate and use more and more the competence and the documentation we provide as a result of our audits. Currently, Georgia has raised the issues of digital security, which is why it will find our specialists’ competence in modern IT service licensing, security and uses even more helpful,’ Vladimirs Isajevs, SQUALIO regional director for Georgia, Ukraine and Kazakhstan, noted. Latvian IT Cluster is an association of Latvian IT companies whose purpose is to promote exports and support innovative solutions. The association includes 35 IT companies as members. SQUALIO is an IT company that shows special approach to clients. The company provides continuous planing, building, services and management of IT infrastructural solutions for more than 1200 clients. These solutions assist the company clients in attaining business goals. The company enhances its experience in networks, safety, cooperation, storage technologies, management of operation system (OS). The company deepens its unique skills in consulting, integration and management service field with the aim for create client-oriented solutions.



April 3, 2017 #187

Oettinger, N1 Bavarian Beer is in Georgia The spring arrived and drinking beer became far more pleasant in a warm weather. Beer fans traditionally are expecting novelties. The first one this year is Oettinger. Oettinger, a real Bavarian Beer has been brewed since 1731 with strict observance of the German Beer Purity Law. The history proved that in Germany Oettinger is the most consumed Bavarian beer. Now it can be enjoyed by Georgian beer fans as well. Unique combination of light color malt, aromatic hop and soft water creates transparent, golden liquid, which along with various flavors bears higher than average bitterness. Enjoy it!



New Daytime Center Opens by Support of Liberty Bank

Daytime Center has opened for persons with disabilities (PWDs) in the village of Saguramo, Mtskheta District. PWDs under and over 18 years old are able to receive services of the daytime center. The center is able to serve 25 beneficiaries, including various services are available for 15 underage and 10 mature PWDs. Currently, the center serves 14 beneficiaries. Their individual rehabilitation plan implies a development of individual functional, social, living and vocational skills, teaching a use of adapted furniture. The center provides two meals a day, transports beneficiaries from homes to the center and returns them back, provides consultations of therapists

and neuropsychologists, involves beneficiaries in culture-recreational and sports activities, organizes inpatient medical and psychological services. Beneficiaries are financed by the Government in the form of vouchers. Previously, an orphanage used to function in the current building. The orphanage was closed as part of de-institutionalization program. Before closure, Orphanage was rehabilitated by Japanese Embassy. Later the building was transmitted to various state structures. Finally, it was returned to Social Service Agency. The agency decided to organize a daytime center in this building and announced competition for service supply.



Levanccio Arts & Crafts for Art Lovers Georgian designer Eto Gzirishvili and artist Levan Kvaratskhelia founded a company Levanccio Arts & Crafts together. The aim of the founders was to include more art in daily life. “People go to galleries very rarely, they don’t have a big interest towards visual arts. Therefore we decided to switch Levanccio’s graphic and visual compositions to daily items such as t-shirt, bag, coaster and different souvenirs”-explained Eto Gzirishvili. It is a family business. We are two people:Levan Kvaratskhelia and Eto Gzirishvili. Levan creates illustrations and me, as a graphic designer process everything and provide a good quality printing and realization of the product.

Georgian Winemaking Companies Sign New Partnership Contracts in China The history of the brand started in Georgia, where shoe mass production didn’t exist before. Young brothers, Giorgi and Shota Mikaia decided to make their dream come true and create ideal sneakers. We decided to create minimalistic and a high quality brand at the same time. That’s how CROSTY idea was born. At this stage, we collaborate with several Georgian and foreign conceptual shops: Dots Tbilisi,, SPOT2.55, Minsk, Belarus and at the same time, currently, we have active negotiations with different shops from all over the world. Our sneakers are made with minimalistic design and we use the best quality materials for it.

Kutaisi Education Development and Employment Center won the competition. The company possesses huge experience in the field and manages daytime centers in Kutaisi, Terjola and Samtredia for PWDs. Liberty Bank has provided assistance in arranging Saguramo Daytime Center infrastructure. The bank has financed road, yard and building arrangement works. At the opening ceremony the guests received information about the center infrastructure, saw photo materials depicting the center operation, peculiarities, plans. At the solemn ceremony the provider company, Kutaisi Education Development and Employment Center, transmitted awards to partner organizations, Liberty Bank, Japanese Embassy and McLane Association for their support. Zaza Sopromadze, Social Service Agency director, Toshio Kaitan, Japanese Ambassador in Georgia, and Aleksi Khoroshvili, Liberty Bank director general, addressed the guests at the daytime center opening ceremony. “Liberty Bank has been actively cooperating with Ministry of Labor, Health and Social Protection. We are happy to have jointly rehabilitated the center. We hope to implement

First Fresh Cosmetics Handmade in Georgia Euphoria is the first fresh cosmetics startup which was founded by two friends. One of the founders, Ana Sulaberidze talks about the challenges and obstacles Euphoria had to face entering Georgian market. Tell us about you, when did you come up with an idea of creating the company? Euphoria is a startup which was founded by two friends, Ana Sulaberidze and Irina Papashvili. We are both psychologists but we have very different profiles. Last summer, I used to show Irina foreign brands which produced fresh cosmetics and we decided we could do it as well. We had a success from the beginning. The production is made in Georgia, how do you guarantee the quality and where exactly do you produce your product? At this stage, we make the cosmetics at our workshop and purchase one part of the raw materials locally and import rest from abroad, from US for example. We want to extend our company and gain certificates in the future. What were challenges you had to overcome while entering market? We had a lot of positive response from people; there was an interest and demand from public. There are difficulties as well, though. Some of the customers think that Georgian product is low quality and it is hard to gain trust in this sense, however, the ones who used our product are now assured that we product high quality products. It should also be noted that our product is not known and this is a big obstacle. People don’t understand the difference between fresh cosmetics and normal cosmetics. Some people don’t even understand what are our products for and what they can use them for. It is quite natural and we are doing our best to inform people about our production. What is your target segment? We have different groups of customers. Some of our product is targeted for young people and others are for middle-aged women. How is Euphoria going to position itself on the competitive market? Do you plan to export your products abroad? Euphoria is the first Georgian fresh cosmetics brand. We offer our customers 100% natural and bio cosmetics and we want to add many more products, therefore we will have to work a lot in this field. As for export, it is too early to talk about it. When we establish ourselves on local market, we can start thinking about export.

many other interesting projects in the future too. For many years Liberty Bank has prioritized assistance of PWDs, because we believe their integration into our society is of crucial importance», Liberty Bank director general Aleksi Khoroshvili said. «Providing services for PWDs, their preparation for independent life, support of their integration into society and attainable healthcare for them is one of the state priorities. We are happy nongovernmental sector also supports us in our efforts and they also develop these services. Assistance by private sector and foreign friends are also very important. We united can change the future of PWDs and use potential of these pope to the benefit of our society. We hope private sector will show more initiative and readiness to enable PWDs to attain self-fulfillment, create adapted and comfortable environment. Currently, 46 daytime centers function in Georgia and they provide various services. We hope these services will be further expanded and will become more attainable for Georgia-based PWDs», Deputy Minister of Labor, Health and Social Protection Zaza Sopromadze noted.

First Online Shop Selling Knitted Decorations is the first interior knitted decoration online brand which was founded in 2015 by three people: Nino Bichiashvili, Mariam Vardanashvili, and Nino Kikodze. Knit Decor offers its customers a wide range of sophisticatedly designed knitted decoration for their house. Our brand is created for all age and social groups. We have different lines of production: modern, vintage, and children.In the beginning, our brand was focused on retail sales however, a lot of large companies contacted us and as a result, Knit decor makes products for hotels, shops and creates interior for different companies. At the same time, we maintain retail sales online and our customers can also buy our products at the stand in Homemart. In addition, we are planning to open show room with other furniture producer companies which will offer customers furniture and house accessories made in Georgia.

April 3, 2017 #187

Instable quality Makes Georgian Hazelnut Cheaper compared to Competitor Countries Conversations with representatives of primary chain of Hazelnut production, Hazelnut processing plants and exporter companies prove that Hazelnut quality is a major problem in Georgia’s Hazelnut sector. EUGEORGIA.INFO


ll chains involved in Hazelnut business agree that in 2016 farmers picked low-quality Hazelnut because of incorrect care, improper picking and storing. Moreover, a major part of farmers complains about spread diseases and pests. It is also said that farmers frequently make focus on a volume of harvest, not on quality. According to the 2016 FAO indicators, Georgia ranks fourth among Hazelnut producer countries worldwide. Moreover, Hazelnut exports occupies growing ratio in Georgia’s agriculture products exports over the past years. Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti, Guria and Imereti are leading regions in terms of Hazelnut production with more than 80% ratio in Georgia’s total Hazelnut production. has inquired activities and problems of Hazelnut manufacturers as part of trainings organized in Zugdidi with the financial support of Dutch Embassy. Zaira Shelia, director of Sachino cooperative, complains about spread diseases and says that Hazelnut harvest was very bad in 2016, despite she had analyzed and fertilized soil. Jemal Chakhaia, agronomist for AgroHouse farmers service center in Zugdidi, said that high humidity has mainly provoked various diseases. This factor could have been prevented by correct cutting and keeping due distance between Hazelnut trees, he said. Gela Abuladze, farmer and owner of Hazelnut processing plant, talks about correct care for Hazelnut and harvest spoilage: “To pick high-quality Hazelnut, we should carry out due procedures in spring, starting from Hazelnut roots, including; treatmentcleaning, making channels in case of marshlands, fertilizing soil, cleaning the soil from grass. I pick harvest three times. Some farmers wait for harvest for a month and then pick Hazelnut at once, but this practice worsens quality of Hazelnut and grows humidity in the crop. Because of improper storage practices, population has worsened Hazelnut themselves. Previously, pests were less spread in Tsalenjikha, but they multiplied after picking harvest. In 2016 high humidity in environment increased Hazelnut humidity too; In previous years Hazelnut humidity was 12%, in 2016- 42%. Consequently, less job was required in previous years. Such high humidity hindered Hazelnut drying process at rooms. That’s why their harvest spoiled”. Abuladze owns Hazelnut plantation on 40 hectares. His processing plant buy Hazelnut from local population too. He breaks Hazelnut and sells it to SRT processing exporter company. “For the purpose of improving the storage practice and concentrating farmer’s focus on quality, the plant introduced new rules in 2016. Previously, the company used to buy all sorts of Hazelnut



for the same price, while in 2016 the price was determined due to recovery yield, i.e. ratio of valuable Hazelnut in delivered Hazelnut”. Shalva Abumava, head of Darcheli Hazelnut cooperative board, noted that in 2016 he failed to sign an agreement with Italian partners because of lowquality harvest. He has built Hazelnut drying facilities and storehouse by state financial component. The built infrastructure was handed over to the cooperative in leasing and in 2016 we transformed it into processing enterprise. We added production machineries and offered farmers to process it. Moreover, we conducted trainings for cooperative members in Hazelnut growing and picking issues. Currently, cooperative activities include Hazelnut drying-storing, processing and sales. Darcheli Hazelnut plans to export product to foreign markets too, Abumava said and stressed: “ To this end, we should receive top quality Hazelnut, first of all, while quality control cannot be carried out at processing plants if farmers deliver low-quality polluted Hazelnut. We plan to introduce Global Gap to control the level of pesticides or fertilizers, as well as their implementation in agricultural terms. Small farmers also realize the importance of all these aspects – their Hazelnut could be sold for 6 GEL in case of due quality, but they have sold one kilogram for 3 GEL. This happens because they cannot care for garden in due manner. The cooperative receives Hazelnut from about 46 hectare land plot. Our average harvest capacity is 1.5 tons on a hectare, but in my personal plantation I pick 3 tons on a hectare. Analysis of Hazelnut price chain conducted by USAID also proves low indicators of Hazelnut harvest and consequently, low revenues. We know that we had low-quality Hazelnut harvest in 2016. That’s why we have faced problems with reaching big scales, Inga Archbaia, director of GEO Food Europe company, noted. “The enterprise launched operation in 2016 and processed about 70 tons of Hazelnut in the first year (bought Hazelnut from about 250 farmers). The enterprise was founded by a Latvian investor. They make focus on quality aspects and they plan to introduce ISO standards in production. was interested in requirements that processing enterprises pose to farmers, as well as in criteria for accepting Hazelnut. GEONUTS director Shalva Dvali noted that the main criterion is Hazelnut recovery yield and humidity level, however there are some processing enterprises that accept low-quality Hazelnut too. Consequently, farmers find place, where they can sell even low-quality Hazelnut. Improving Georgian Hazelnut quality is also very important, otherwise we will not be able to compete with our competitors in Azerbaijan, Turkey and Italy», Dvali noted. Leading companies control quality

themselves and introduce international standards in their production. For example, Nutex founder and executive director Mamuka Beriashvili says: “We buy Hazelnut from small farmers and processing enterprises. We control microbiological and chemical pollution at laboratories and only unspoiled product is used in our production. We do not buy Hazelnut chaotically. Entrepreneurs from which we buy Hazelnut are kept under monitoring, and after the product are stored at our warehouses, we control chemical and microbiological parameters in continuous regime, as well as temperature regime in production and warehouses, comparative humidity. We also care for pest control and fumigation system. We also provide tracking system. Each pack or sack has its own unique code. Suppliers are also classified. If supplier, that is primary level chain of production, does not satisfy due standards, then these standards turn useless. Moreover, if we want to adjust

Statistics of Hazelnut prices of Georgian and competitor countries is given in the charter due to FAO indicators. Hazelnut prices in Georgia are lower compared to prices in Italy, Turkey and USA, while in 20142015 Georgian Hazelnut was more expensive compared to Azerbaijani Hazelnut, according to official indicators. Georgian production to European level, existence of Georgian brand is also very important. Nutex currently is passing BRC FS certification process. Beriashvili makes accent on Georgian Hazelnut’s lower prices as compared to foreign competitor products. «Georgian Hazelnut is the cheapest product among other competitors, because quality standards are not protected in our country. Azerbaijani and Turkish Hazelnuts are more expensive due to their quality. Two years have passed after processing enterprises started thinking of quality improvement. It is necessary to improve quality to compete with others. According to recent forecasts Hazelnut production may increase considerably on global level and this factor may become of vital importance for Georgian Hazelnut if the quality is not improved», Beriashvili said. Statistics of Hazelnut prices of Georgian and competitor countries is given in the charter due to FAO indicators. Hazelnut prices in Georgia are lower compared to prices in Italy, Turkey and USA, while in 2014-2015 Georgian Hazelnut was more expensive compared to Azerbaijani Hazelnut, according to official indicators. MARIAM LUKASHVILI SET MA degree student


High Quality Plant Protection Products are Available in Georgia “Falsified but cheaper pesticides, costs more for farmers”

Business Consulting Company



he modern agriculture does not exist without high –quality plant protection products. Any farmer, investor or person interested in agri business cannot plan his or her business without having guaranteed access to highquality plant protection products. The competition is annually rising throughout the world regarding the production of plant defense means and fertilizers. Gennerally most active countries in this direction are China, India, Turkey and Iran. These countries are basically producing generics but it doesn’t automatically mean that the above mentioned countries produce low –quality products. On the leading positions in the field of manufacturing high-quality plant protection products throughout the world are European countries and the United States of America. Nowadays, in Georgia there are registered more than 700 pesticides. Currently, there are more than 30 companies engaged in import and realization of plant protection products and fertilizers on Georgian market. There are 4 companies on the leading position: Noblexthe authorized importer of Bayer; Agrovita-the official provider of Basf; Kartlisi –authorized importer of Dupon and Swiss- Syngenta. High –quality protection products and fertilizers are available for any investor, or person interested in agro business in Georgia. It should be noted that sometimes there are falsification evidences in the regions. Even more frequent are the facts of violations of labeling

and packaging. National Food Agency has recently tightened its policy in this direction, which already has some results and it should be welcomed. It is important for farmers to know the difference between the high-quality and substandard products in terms of use. We often hear from the farmers that the high –quality products are expensive and they cannot afford themselves to buy them, accordingly, they purchase the low-quality products (generics). However, these types of preparations have lower efficiency for the plant, thus the farmers have to use them more often and it means that in the end, the farmer has to pay quite a large amount. While high-quality preparations are highly effective and have less impact on the environment as well. Correspondingly, thanks to the high efficiency of its impact, the usage of such types of products are low. Therefore the farmer saves since he’s using less of good quality product. We have to proudly mention Georgian production. It should be noted that there is a huge production of Ammonium Nitrate in the plant which is located in Rustavi. Recently the production of various kinds of organic and bacterial high-quality fertilizers has been increased. The part of Georgian production is exported as well. Finally, it should be emphasized that the highquality plant protection products are available in our country. Therefore, any person interested in agro business can easily grow high-quality products. We hope that the general understanding will be soon increased and we will learn how negative consequences can have the usage of poor quality preparations as it has no possitive affect for our agriculture and the secondly it pollutes the environment.



April 3, 2017 #187


April 3, 2017 #187



“ When it comes Shah Deniz Stage 2 will add a further 16 billion cubic meters per year of gas production to the approximately 9 billion cubic meters per year produced by Shah Deniz Stage 1.

BP, its partners invested over $15 billion in Azerbaijan’s biggest gas project


s of today, BP and its partners invested more than $15 billion in the Shah Deniz Stage 2 project in Azerbaijan and Georgia, where BP operates as an operator, Gordon Birrell, former BP regional president for Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey, told reporters in Baku Mar. 29. BP expects that the final expenditures for the Shah Deniz Stage 2 project will be lower than those specified in the final investment decision. The cost of the Shah Deniz Stage 2 is estimated at $28 billion. It is too early to talk about a specific amount of expenditures, as there are still a number of expensive works, noted Birrell, adding that however, the company expects the project to be cheaper than planned and to be ahead of both the technical and investment schedules. The Shah Deniz Stage 2 envisages the drilling of 26 subsea wells, construction of two platforms, underwater pipelines for gas and condensate, expansion of the oil

and gas terminal in Sangachal settlement, construction of two gas compressor stations and the connection of this infrastructure to the South Caucasus gas pipeline. The gas, produced within the second stage of Shah Deniz field’s development, will be exported to Turkey and European markets through expansion of the South Caucasus Pipeline and the construction of the Trans Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) and the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP). Shah Deniz Stage 2 will add a further 16 billion cubic meters per year of gas production to the approximately 9 billion cubic meters per year produced by Shah Deniz Stage 1. A contract for development of the Shah Deniz offshore field was signed on June 4, 1996. The shareholders in the contract are BP (operator - 28.8 percent), AzSD (10 percent), SGC Upstream (6.7 percent), Petronas (15.5 percent), Lukoil (10 percent), NIOC (10 percent) and TPAO (19 percent).

Russia Wins Early Verdict in $3 Billion Ukrainian Bond Case


ussia won an early verdict in a London lawsuit that may force Ukraine to repay part of a defaulted $3 billion bond, in a dispute that extended the battle over Russia’s annexation of Crimea into a U.K courtroom. Judge William Blair threw out all of Ukraine’s arguments Wednesday, saying he was at pains to distinguish between the law and the “troubling” political background. He ruled the case shouldn’t go to a full trial but gave Ukraine the right to appeal. The loss of the fertile Crimean region and the Russian-backed revolt in the east had pushed Ukraine to the brink of bankruptcy, forcing it to seek an international bailout. Russia refused to take part in a $15 billion debt restructuring that Ukraine reached with foreign

bondholders including Franklin Templeton in 2015. It filed the London lawsuit to force Ukraine to repay the defaulted $3 billion bond, plus nearly $700,000 in interest for every additional day of default. “It would not be right to order the case to go to full trial in such circumstances,” Blair said in a summary of his ruling Wednesday. The decision is a win for Russia in the politically charged case and a setback for Ukraine, which has been chronically short of cash since the conflict began in 2014. Prices for Ukrainian bonds dipped on news of the decision. Judge Blair, who called the background to the suit “deeply troubling,” said that the economic and political pressure arguments fell under international law and couldn’t be dealt with by English courts.

to business, art, education even, innovation is key for growth and success

Steady economic growth over the past year has seen a decline in poverty and an improvement in the quality of life.

Darryl “D.M.C.” McDaniels

Positive signs as AsiaA Turkish Pacific moves towards Court Has Temporarily global development goals Shut Down A Turkish court halted the activities of online travel agent in a court case alleging the website had violated Turkish competition law, the Association of Turkish Travel Agencies (TURSAB) said on Wednesday. The ruling by a court in Istanbul comes as a result of a 2015 case opened by TURSAB against for allegedly carrying out “unjust competition against travel agencies”. The association had previously made pay Turkey’s competition authority more than 2.5 million lira ($686,605) in fines. The court ruled for the online travel agent’s activities to be protectively halted for an undisclosed period of time.

“Women in Business” programme launches in Armenia The “Women in Business” (WiB) programme has been launched in Armenia, making it one of the first Eastern Partnership country to take part in the programme, “Armenpress” reports citing EU Neighbours official website. The programme will promote women’s entrepreneurship and support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) led by women. The programme will help women-led SMEs to access finance and business advice, offer financing through local partner financial institutions and provide technical assistance. A total of approximately EUR 62 million has been made available to the WiB programme by its donors.


ith just over a year since the adoption of a historic blueprint to end poverty and protect the planet, positive signs have already started to emerge among countries in the AsiaPacific region as they push ahead with the implementation of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It is encouraging to note that most countries in the region have made serious attempts to domesticate the landmark global action-plan by developing national sustainable development strategies– a first and crucial step if we are to fully realize the ambitious targets set out in the landmark agreement. Steady economic growth over the past year has seen a decline in poverty and an improvement in the quality of life. A bright spot worth highlighting is the progress on gender equality. Gender parity has been achieved in primary education, and maternal mortality rates have been brought down across the region with the exception of certain pockets. For example, maternal mortality dropped by 64 per cent in South Asia from 1990 to 2015 and by 57 per cent in the Pacific over the same period. Notwithstanding these incremental gains, a number of outstanding challenges remain which if not effectively addressed may scuttle our collective efforts. A joint study undertaken by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), the Asian Development Bank (ADB), and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) reveals that some 400 million people in Asia and the Pacific continue to live in extreme income poverty and more than one in four people experience poverty in multiple dimensions that impact their health, education, and standard of living. South Asia is the worst affected with 15 per cent of the population living in extreme poverty, and 86 per cent residing in rural areas where income diversification opportunities are limited and challenges of poor natural resource management persist. Of equal concern is the rise in income inequality within countries. The challenge is to ensure that prosperity is felt by all, and not just a fortunate few. With 12 per cent of the population, or 490 million people, still undernourished in our region, ending hunger and poverty will heavily depend on intro-

ducing sustainable food production systems and more resilient agricultural practices. Despite reductions in infant mortality rates, children in low income countries are still nearly nine times more likely to die before reaching the age of one than those in high income countries. Enhancing the health of citizens will also require expansion of coverage of health services in many countries. This means increasing government spending on health, as per capita government spending is as low as $4 per person in low income economies of our region. Despite progress in gender equality and women’s empowerment made in Asia and the Pacific on several fronts, significant gaps still remain. Women continue to be paid less and are more likely to find themselves in vulnerable employment with low wages, no formal contracts or labour rights and minimal social protection. In 2015, the gender pay gap in the region as a whole reached an astounding 20 per cent. As a whole, the region has also experienced declining biodiversity levels – a major source of distress for Pacific island economies - where the value of fish caught in the territorial waters of some small island developing States is worth up to three times their GDP. Future risks to ocean resources are further underscored by the fact that 40 per cent of our oceans are heavily affected by unsustainable practices. Finally, the Asia-Pacific region faces a high infrastructure deficit. At the same time, demand pressures will grow as the urban population will swell by 50 million each year, aggravating congestion, air pollution and waste management. Needless to say, these challenges must be urgently addressed. Strong continued leadership, knowledge sharing and UN system collaboration, are pivotal tools that will move us all closer to realizing the aspirations set out by the 2030 Agenda. The dynamism and development track record of our region lends us hope that we can achieve balanced economic, social and environmental development by pursuing the right blend of rebalancing to revive domestic and regional demand. ESCAP remains committed to strengthening the capacity of countries, so that they can embrace integrated strategies to confront the multidimensional facets of poverty, and promote the opportunity for prosperity for all.



April 3, 2017 #187

April 3, 2017 #187

Embassy United States of America Embassy 11 Balanchivadze St., Dighomi Dstr., Tbilisi Tel: 27-70-00, 53-23-34 E-mail:; United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland Embassy 51 Krtsanisi Str., Tbilisi, Tel: 227-47-47 E-mail: Republic of France Embassy 49, Krtsanisi Str. Tbilisi, Tel: 272 14 90 E-mail: Web-site: Federal Republic of Germany Embassy 20 Telavi St. Tbilisi Tel: 44 73 00, Fax: 44 73 64 Italian RepublicEmbassy 3a Chitadze St, Tbilisi, Tel: 299-64-18, 292-14-62, 292-18-54 E-mail: Republic of Estonia Embassy 4 Likhauri St., Tbilisi, Tel: 236-51-40 E-mail: Republic of Lithuania Embassy 25 Tengiz Abuladze St, Tbilisi Tel: 291-29-33 E-mail: Republic of Latvia Embassy 16 Akhmeta Str., Avlabari, 0144 Tbilisi. E-mail: Greece Republic Embassy 37. Tabidze St. Tbilisi Tel: 91 49 70, 91 49 71, 91 49 72 Czech RepublicEmbassy 37 Chavchavadze St. Tbilisi ;Tel: 291-67-40/41/42 E-mail: Web-sait: Japan Embassy 7 Krtsanisi St. Tbilisi Tel: +995 32 2 75 21 11, Fax: +995 32 2 75 21 20 Kingdom of Sweden Embassy 15 Kipshidze St. Tbilisi Tel: +995 32 2 55 03 20 , Fax: +995 32 2 22 48 90 Kingdom of the Netherlands Embassy 20 Telavi St. Tbilisi Tel: 27 62 00, Fax: 27 62 32 People’s Republic of China Embassy 52 Barnov St. Tbilisi Tel: 225-22-86, 225-21-75, 225-26-70 E-mail: Republic of Bulgaria Embassy 15 Gorgasali Exit, 0105 Tbilisi, Georgia Tel: +995 32 291 01 94; +995 32 291 01 95 Fax: +99 532 291 02 70 Republic of Hungary Embassy 83 Lvovi Street, Tbilisi Tel: 39 90 08; E-mail: State of Israel Embassy 61 Agmashenebeli Ave. Tbilisi Tel: 95 17 09, 94 27 05 Embassy of Swiss Confederation’s Russian Federation Interests Section Embassy 51 Chavchavadze Av., Tbilisi Tel: 291-26-45, 291-24-06, 225-28-03 E-mail: Ukraine Embassy 76-g Chavchavadze Ave., Tbilisi Tel: 231-11-61, 231-14-54 E-mail: Consular Agency: 71, Melikishvili St., Batumi Tel: (8-88-222) 3-16-00/ 3-14-78 Republic of Turkey Embassy 35 Chavchavadze Ave., Tbilisi Tel: 225-20-72/73/74/76 Consulate General in Batumi 9 Ninoshvili Street, Batumi Tel: 422 25 58 00 Republic of Azerbaijan Embassy Kipshidze II-bl . N1., Tbilisi Tel: 225-26-39, 225-35-26/27/28 E-mail: Address: Dumbadze str. 14, Batumi Tel: 222-7-67-00; Fax: 222-7-34-43 Republic of Armenia Embassy 4 Tetelashvili St. Tbilisi Tel: 95-94-43, 95-17-23, 95-44-08 E-mail: Web: Consulate General, Batumi Address: Batumi, Gogebashvili str. 32, Apt. 16 Kingdom of Spain Embassy Rustaveli Ave. 24, I floor, Tbilisi Tel: 230-54-64 E-mail: emb.tiflis@maec.esRomania Embassy


TBILISI GUIDE 7 Kushitashvili St., Tbilisi Tel: 38-53-10; 25-00-98/97 E-mail: Republic of Poland Embassy 19 Brothers Zubalashvili St., Tbilisi Tel: 292-03-98 Web-site: Republic of Iraq Embassy Kobuleti str. 16, Tbilisi Tel: 291 35 96; 229 07 93 E-mail: Federative Republic of Brazil Embassy Chanturia street 6/2, Tbilisi Tel.: +995-32-293-2419 Fax.: +995-32-293-2416 Islamic Republic of Iran Embassy 80, I.Chavchavadze St. Tbilisi, Tel: 291-36-56, 291-36-58, 291-36-59, 291-36-60; Fax: 291-36-28 E-mail: United Nations Office Address: 9 Eristavi St. Tbilisi Tel: 225-11-26/28, 225-11-29/31 Fax: 225-02-71/72 E-mail: Web-site: International Monetary Fund Office Address : 4 Freedom Sq., GMT Plaza, Tbilisi Tel: 292-04-32/33/34 E-mail: Web-site: Asian Development Bank Georgian Resident Mission Address: 1, G. Tabidze Street

Freedom Square 0114 Tbilisi, Georgia Tel: +995 32 225 06 19 E-mail:; Web-site: World Bank Office Address : 5a Chavchavadze Av., lane-I, Tbilisi, Georgia ; Tel: 291-30-96, 291-26-89/59 Web-site: Regional Office of European Bank for Reconstruction and Development Address: 6 Marjanishvili St. Tbilisi Tel: 244 74 00, 292 05 13, 292 05 14 Web-site: Representation of the Council of Europe in Georgia Address : 26 Br. Kakabadze, Tbilisi Tel: 995 32 291 38 70/71/72/73 Fax: 995 32 291 38 74 Web-site: Embassy of the Slovak Republic Address: Chancery: 85 Irakli Abashidze St. Tbilisi, 0162 Georgia Consular Office: 38 Nino Chkheidze St. Tbilisi, 0102 Georgia Phone: 2 222 4437, 2 296 1913 e-mail:

Hotels in Georgia TBILISI MARRIOTT Tbilisi , 13 Rustaveli Ave. Tel: 77 92 00, COURTYARD MARRIOTT Tbilisi , 4 Freedom Sq. Tel: 77 91 00 RADISSON BLU HOTEL, TBILISI Rose Revolution Square 1 0108, Tbilisi Tel: +995 32 402200 RADISSON BLU HOTEL, BATUMI Ninoshvili Str. 1, 6000 Bat’umi, Georgia Tel: 8 422255555 SHERATON METECHI PALACE Tbilisi , 20 Telavi St. Tel: 77 20 20, SHERATON BATUMI 28 Rustaveli Street • Batumi Tel: (995)(422) 229000 HOLIDAY INN TBILISI Business hotel Addr: 1, 26 May Square Tel: +995 32 230 00 99 E-mail: Website: BETSY’S HOTEL With Marvellous Tbilisi Views Addr: 32/34 Makashvili St. Tbilisi Tel: +995 32 293 14 04; +995 32 292 39 96 Fax: +995 32 99 93 11 E-mail: Website:

Restaurants CORNER HOUSE Tbilisi, I. Chavchavadze ave. 10, Tel: 0322 47 00 49; Email: RESTAURANT BARAKONI Restaurant with healthy food. Georgian-European Cuisine Agmashenebeli Alley 13th Phone: 555 77 33 77 CHARDIN 12 Tbilisi , 12 Chardin St. , Tel: 92 32 38 CAFE 78 Best of the East and the West Lado Asatiani 33, SOLOLAKI 032 2305785; 574736290 BREAD HOUSE Tbilisi , 7 Gorgasali St. , Tel: 30 30 30 BUFETTI - ITALIAN RESTAURANT Tbilisi , 31 I. Abashidze St. , Tel: 22 49 61 DZVELI SAKHLI Tbilisi , 3 Right embankment , Tel: 92 34 97, 36 53 65, Fax: 98 27 81 IN THE SHADOW OF METEKHI Tbilisi , 29a Tsamebuli Ave. , Tel: 77 93 83, Fax: 77 93 83 SAKURA - JAPANESE RESTAURANT Tbilisi , 29 I. Abashidze St. , Tel: 29 31 08, Fax: 29 31 08 SIANGAN - CHINESE RESTAURANT Tbilisi , 41 Peking St , Tel: 37 96 88 VERA STEAK HOUSE Tbilisi , 37a Kostava St , Tel: 98 37 67 BELLE DE JOUR 29 I. Abashidze str, Tbilisi; Tel: (+995 32) 230 30 30 VONG 31 I. Abashidze str, Tbilisi Tel: (+995 32) 230 30 30 BRASSERIE L’EXPRESS 14 Chardin str, Tbilisi Tel: (+995 32) 230 30 30 TWO SIDE PARTY CLUB 7 Bambis Rigi, Tbilisi Tel: (+995 32) 230 30 30

SH. RUSTAVELI STATE THEATRE Tbilisi. 17 Rustaveli Ave. Tel: 93 65 83, Fax: 99 63 73 TBILISI STATE MARIONETTE THEATRE Tbilisi. 26 Shavteli St. Tel: 98 65 89, Fax: 98 65 89 Z. PALIASHVILI TBILISI STATE THEATRE OF OPERA AND BALLET Tbilisi. 25 Rustaveli Ave. Tel: 98 32 49, Fax: 98 32 50

Galleries ART GALLERY LINE Tbilisi. 44 Leselidze St. BAIA GALLERY Tbilisi. 10 Chardin St. Tel: 75 45 10 GALLERY Tbilisi. 12 Erekle II St. Tel: 93 12 89

Real Estate International Real Estate Company (IREC) Tbilisi. 9 P. Aslanidi St. Tel: +995 32 238 058 Mob: 599 95 76 71 Email:

GSS Car rental offers a convenient service for those who are interested in renting car in Georgia. Rental fleet mainly consist of Japanese made SUV’s, the company has various models of cars including sedans and minivans which are in good technical condition. Contact information: Email: Address: Shalva Dadiani 10

Cinemas AKHMETELI Tbilisi. “Akhmeteli” Subway Station Tel: 58 66 69 AMIRANI Tbilisi. 36 Kostava St. Tel: 99 99 55, RUSTAVELI Tbilisi. 5 Rustaveli Ave. Tel: 92 03 57, 92 02 85, SAKARTVELO Tbilisi. 2/9 Guramishvili Ave. Tel: 8 322308080,

LIMELIGHTTRAVELINFOCENTER Address: 13 Sioni Street, 0105, Tbilisi (at the end of Shardeni Street) Phone: +995 322 999 123 E-mail: Web-page: Facebook page:

Theatres A. GRIBOEDOV RUSSIAN STATE DRAMA THEATRE Tbilisi. 2 Rustaveli Ave. Tel: 93 58 11, Fax: 93 31 15 INDEPENDENT THEATRE Tbilisi. 2 Rustaveli Ave. Tel: 98 58 21, Fax: 93 31 15 K. MARJANISHVILI STATE ACADEMIC THEATRE Tbilisi. 8 Marjanishvili St. Tel: 95 35 82, Fax: 95 40 01 M. TUMANISHVILI CINEMA ACTORS THEATRE Tbilisi. 164 Agmashenebeli Ave. Tel: 35 31 52, 34 28 99, Fax: 35 01 94 METEKHI – THEATRE OF GEORGIAN NATIONAL BALLET Tbilisi. 69 Balanchivadze St. Tel: (99) 20 22 10 MUSIC AND DRAMATIC STATE THEATRE Tbilisi. 182 Agmashenebeli Ave. Tel: 34 80 90, Fax: 34 80 90 NABADI - GEORGIAN FOLKLORE THEATRE Tbilisi. 19 Rustaveli Ave. Tel: 98 99 91 S. AKHMETELI STATE DRAMATIC THEATRE Tbilisi. 8 I. Vekua St. Tel: 62 59 73




April 3, 2017 #187