Caucasus Business Week #315

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BUSINESS caucasus

February 24, 2020 -




Euronews, in Partnership with Silknet, Founded its Third Franchise - Euronews Georgia, Set to Launch by July 2020



Georgia’s Macroeconomic and Financial Policy



Europe’s Biggest HR Company Seeks Skilled Workforce in Georgia

Georgian Honey to Fully Satisfy Quality Standards Soon

Business Expects New Bill to Simplify Insolvency Procedures

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First Arch Week to Take Place in Tbilisi

EBRD and GCF to fund Renovation of Subway Cars by EUR 60 Million

Organized by the young ambassador, Mariam Bochorishvili in Italy, Tbilisi Arch Week will hold on February 26-29.

EBRD reviewed the concept of Tbilisi Metro Project.

Export Volume hit Record-High Indicator in January - 10% Increase

Tobacco Excise Budget Received 724 Million GEL Vano Machavariani spoke about the taxation of tobacco and tobacco products in the Parliament within the Minister's hours.

Export volume hit a record-high indicator in January 2020 with 262.6 MLN USD (i.e. 10% increase compared to the respective period of the past year). Export volumes have never been so high in January of any previous year before.

Mikheil Chkhenkeli to Meet Deputy Representative of UNHCR

Georgia Exported 519 Tons of Garlic in 2019

Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sport of Georgia, Mikheil Chkhenkeli hosted Kemlin Furley, the deputy representative of UNHCR.

Garlic is an only product that Georgia-EU free trade agreement limits to export to EU market.

Guguli Maghradze: Parliament Will Not Allow Revision of Tobacco Control Regulations

Economy Minister Visits Electric Transport Manufacturing Company in Belarus Together with the Georgian delegation, Georgian Economy Minister Natia Turnava has visited BelCommunMash, the leading Belarusian public electric transport manufacturer.

Guguli Maghradze has rejected the Georgian Business Association's legislative proposal to amend the law on tobacco control.

Direct Charter Flights are Increasing Between Batumi and Tallinn Adjara's Tourism Department presented tourism potentials of the region on the exhibition Tourset 2020.

Georgia Ranks 88th in terms of Mortgage Interest Rates – Rating of Countries The world’s cheapest mortgage loans are recorded in Finland, the most expensive mortgage loans are issued in Argentina.

The Editorial Board Follows Press Freedom Principles Publisher: LLC Caucasian Business Week - CBW Director: Levan Beglarishvili WWW.CBW.GE Address: Aleksidze Street 1 Sales: Mob: +995 591 01 39 36 Email: Editor: Nutsa Galumashvili. Mobile phone: 595 380382 Copy Editor: Ellie Rambo Reporters: Nina Gomarteli; Mariam Kopaliani; Merab Janiashvili, Economic columnist: Andria Gvidiani; Technical Assistant: Giorgi Kheladze;

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Euronews, in Partnership with Silknet, Founded its Third Franchise - Euronews Georgia, Set to Launch by July 2020


he opening of franchises is a new direction for Euronews, to be a global and at the same time a local - "Glocal" news channel. Currently, Euronews Georgia is preparing to go live and CBW had an interview with Euronews CEO, Michael Peters to learn more about the updates and purpose of the channel: To begin with, please give us a little bit of insight what’s the status of Euronews Georgia currently. I’m happy to share, that everything’s on the right track: the location has been chosen, the technical side has settled, and the launch date is expected to be in June, July at the latest. As we signed the agreement with Silknet, it will guarantee to carry out Euronews values. Selection of staff goes in consultation with Euronews headquarter HR. As for the chef of news, one will be appointed solely by Euronews. Does the channel already have an editor in chief? As expected, we’ve received hundreds of applications and recommendations about candidates. It was a hard process to choose one for now, as we are citing a neutral edition in the country, and a selected person must have shared the exact same values. We respect all the journalists and media professionals in the country, I’m sure there are people like that in the future. We are extremely strict on this line, as we have a precise view of what we want to do everywhere in the world. Euronews will ensure that news is treated with strict impartiality by appointing Vasilis Bitsis as the editorin-chief of the newly-created channel and by establishing and controlling an editorial board. He’s worked for Euronews for 7 years, he’s a director of Euronews Greek Service in Athens, so he’s aware of all details of editorial policy. He will be managing here from 6 to 12 months, and during this time, we urge to recruit journalists from the young generation. Our idea is to find that one person from Georgia who’ll then become the head of the newsroom, will be trained accordingly and learn about the policies we have. Euronews Georgia is the third franchise, along with Euronews Serbia and Euronews Albania. Our country like others certainly needs an impartial, unbiased media platform. What are the other motives Georgia has been selected for? We made a choice based on two main factors: positioning of the country itself and the nature of the partner. We have a very good corporation here, here we found a fantastic match between these two criteria. Geopolitically speaking, the country that is a crossroad is very interesting for us. In our opinion, Georgia is a key country because of its location and herewith we share lots of values with the country itself and our partner- Silknet. We demonstrated what exactly our vision is and we won’t compromise on imbalanced approach. I think we started an interesting challenge in a country

where media nowadays seems to have a position. We respect their professionalism, we don’t say we are better than others, but I expect us to bring something different to Georgia. Obviously, Euronews’ policy will be applied to Euronews Georgia. How will it be the editorial policy managed? It will be absolutely similar, this chapter is applied to a contract signed with Silknet. We need to follow this policy in Euronews Georgia, like in any other franchises. If there’s any issue regarding that, Euronews can shut the franchise down and withdraw from it. There’s a huge engagement in this regard from our partner, it takes a strong commitment to respecting the brand. The content will be a mixture of international news produced by Euronews that will be adapted to the Georgian language. In addition to this broad international content, surely, there will be a national one. We’ll still be with an international purpose, as we never enter into pure national news because it’s not our positioning. We will speak about local news through the national, regional, international point of view. In other words, the contents of Euronews Georgia will be mixed, meaning that we will bring Europe to Georgia as well as take Georgia to Europe. Scrolling down your Instagram page, I came across unexpected posts. You hold DJ sets in different clubs. It took me by surprise Euronews CEO being so fond of music, and still finding time to follow his passion, along with launching franchises, shaking hands with Government officials and participating in forums. How do you combine these two different worlds? I have an easy point here- Work is during the daytime and DJing is at night, you don’t DJ from 8 am to 8 pm, except when you go to Ibiza. I try to take some time on the weekend, at night, whenever it doesn’t interfere with my job. I started DJing when I was 16 years old, and since then it’s my passion. Other people might like gardening or doing sports, I don’t enjoy any of them, I’m fond of music

so I choose to follow it. I’ve asked myself whether I should do it or not, I even stopped doing that for 10 years, because I thought it wasn’t compatible with my status or schedule. The passion is so rooted inside me, that I decided to go for it. As long as it doesn’t hinder my job, that’s so important to me. I also played it here in Georgia on Thursday, people seem to enjoy it, I have another gig on Saturday, I will play with a DJ from Berlin. To wrap it up, what should be the role of global media? In this case - glocal media. I think the role is very clear, news needs to show more global perspectives and in many respects, rather than all regional and national news. That’s what we’re trying to do at Euronews- to empower people by giving them unbiased facts and let them make their own decisions, have their own opinion on current events. That’s what we do every day, and that will be the purpose of Euronews Georgia too. By Nina Gomarteli

Europe’s Biggest HR Company Seeks Skilled Workforce in Georgia Georgia’s labor market, and employment opportunities for Georgian specialists in Europe and qualifications for possible promotions – Oktay Erciyaz, Director General of the Trenkwalder Group, one of the biggest HR management companies in Europe, discussed these issues for the Business Partner TV program. Trenkwalder Group, one of the leading HR management companies in the Central and Eastern European market, is interested in Georgia, and shows a readiness to promote the training and employment of Georgian citizens in European

countries. As noted by the Trenkwalder Group director general, Georgia is an interesting country for the company thanks to its young, dynamic population and good educational system. “Georgia is an interesting country thanks to its young, dynamic population and their aspirations, as well as it's very good educational system. Today, we met with representatives of two universities. Tomorrow, we will meet with representatives of two other universities. We plan to hold institutional meetings, too, and we got some very good ideas at these meetings”, Oktay Erciyaz noted. Western investors have examined the level of vocational education in the country, first. As noted by Erciyaz, they foster corresponding institutions to establish high-quality vocational education. Initially, the Health Ministry’s representatives and Information Technology engineers will be allowed to develop their career in western countries. The company attracts potential staff through various marketing campaigns that will start in Georgia in the near future. However, the interested bodies will be able to receive detailed information on the official Facebook page of the Trenkwalder Group. The company also accepts resumes from email, he said. During the discussions, the Trenkwalder Group Director General stressed the importance of vocational education, and noted that investors pay attention to the quality of vocational

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education. Therefore, he plans to promote high-quality vocational education in Georgia. “When analyzing the German or the Austrian market, the majority of employees have acquired skills from the vocational education system. This implies both college and vocational education. This refers to both bank employees and machine engineers, and this is a very important factor. Consequently, if Georgia wishes to attract western investors, they, first of all, should pay attention not to the number of diplomas, but the quality of vocational education in the country. Not everybody needs diplomas, but everybody should hold the corresponding skills and vocational education. I have learned that the Georgian government provides the necessary support in this regard, and I believe this is a very good mechanism to find a stable, good workforce for both foreign and domestic investors. We will bring samples from Germany on how the vocational education system works, tand we will promote the corresponding institutions to establish a high quality vocational education. With many years of experience, we have cooperated with many companies, and in a good climate, we will invite these companies so that they support and develop this process”, Oktay Erciyaz said.

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Georgia’s Macroeconomic and Financial Policy The macroeconomic environment in the country, the completed and ongoing reforms – Irakli Kovzanadze, head of the Parliament’s finance and budget committee discussed these issues on the Business Partner TV Program. Positive macroeconomic achievements reflected in the recent IMF report will definitely attract the interest of investors. This is a genuinely positive message sent by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to potential investors, Irakli Kovzanadze noted, and added that the IMF has also recommended that the authorities reduce inflation to the target rate (3%) by the end of 2020. “The IMF report positively appraises current developments in Georgia. This is a good and important message to potential investors, who are interested in making investments in Georgia. The country has increased exports over the past few years. Furthermore, obstacles in the tourism industry were overcome at the end of 2019. We have good indicators in terms of money transfers, and our compatriots remit more than 1.5 billion USD a year. Crediting indicators

have also improved”, Kovzanadze noted. As for a higher-thantargeted inflation rate registered at the end of 2019 hitting an annual 7%, the National Bank of Georgia (NBG) was too delayed to have provided a timely reaction. Anyway, the NBG has carried out the right monetary policy afterwards, Irakli Kovzanadze noted. “Last year, I noted that the central bank could take decisions earlier. Nevertheless, I agree with all the following decisions that the NBG has taken in the aftermath. In September, the Central Bank started carrying out an expansive monetary policy, and raised the monetary policy rate several times. Finally, the rate was at 9%. Therefore, these measures have also influenced the GEL’s exchange rate; currency interventions were also carried out in a timely manner, and the 30% indicator decreased to 25% on foreign currency denominated deposits. This move enables commercial banks to save about 700 million USD from the corresponding accounts and therefore, crediting volumes increased. To some extent, pressure on

the currency market also declined, and the exchange rate also started stabilizing and the volume of credit rose. Higher crediting volumes came as one of the key preconditions for improving economic growth indicators”, Kovzanadze said. It has not been ruled out that the NBG slightly simplified banking regulations introduced for curbing excessive indebtedness, however, not at the expense of regenerating excessive debts again, because, sometimes, our citizens had to sell their own houses, Kovzanadze noted. “We had a problem where some category of our citizens used to take many more loans than they could pay off. There were a lot of examples, when people had to sell their houses. Therefore, I think nobody will agree to revise the coefficients and formulas, because people should take loans when they are solvent. All loans should be supported by solvent borrowers. At the same time, we should demonstrate a certain flexibility in regulations, but it will never happen that insolvent clients take loans”, Kovzanadze said,

As for the reforms carried out by the finance and budget committee and the planned reforms, Kovzanadze listed deposit insurance as one of the successful reforms. This insurance project was launched in 2018, and today it applies to 5,000 GEL deposits. The total amount of the insured deposits exceeds 2 billion GEL, however, we expect the figure to triple in 2020, he noted. In the second half of 2020 the amount of insurable deposits will rise to 15,000 GEL from 5,000 GEL, he added. “The Georgian banking sector has already insured deposits of more than 2 billion GEL. At this stage, deposits of 5,000 GEL are insured, while the figure will rise to 15,000 GEL in the second half of 2020”, Irakli Kovzanadze told Business Partner.

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As submitted to the parliament of Georgia in February 2020, a bill drafted by the government government bill regarding business insolvency procedures aims to improve the business climate in the country. As Nika Nanuashvili, the Legal Director of the

leading countries, worldwide, when it comes to the simplicity of starting a business; however, it takes many years to withdraw from this business in the case of insolvency, Nanuashvili added. The business sector expects this bill to essentially simplify insolvency

Business Association of Georgia (BAG), told the TV Program Business Partner, the new bill on insolvency aligns the state with creditors, liberalizes the process and, in this way, the bill introduces the best modern practices. Georgia is one of the

procedures. This bill is a real breakthrough, because it brings the state together with creditors, and this is an important innovation, Nanuashvili noted. “When talking about the state, we mean the taxation office. Previously, the

taxation office mostly acted as a creditor,, and this practice used to generate serious problems. There was the taxation office, on the one hand, and the Enforcement Bureau, on the other hand, as well as the court system. Naturally, there was the perception that the state was dominant in everything. Today, the state has become an ordinary creditor, and I would say that on this issue the state has slightly distanced itself from the whole process. Court supervision is maintained in this process, and the ability to tax revenue is also preserved. The bill has just alleviated the burden of all these factors, be it rehabilitation or bankruptcy procedures. This will definitely bring about only positive results. This will add more buoyancy and freedom to the process, and bring it in line with modern practices”, Nika Nanuashvili said, As explained by Lasha Nodia, head of the BAG committee for legislative development, the new bill differs from the current legislation dramatically and, in practice, it is a new legislation. The bill allows for companies to know in advance where the process will proceed –rehabilitation, bankruptcy or so-called regulated agreements, whereas today all these procedures remain unclear, Nodia pointed out. Furthermore, the bill abolishes bureaucratic chains such as the socalled Guardian Board,

while the manager of rehabilitation will no longer be appointed by the Enforcement Bureau. The bill specifies timeframes to agree to a rehabilitation plan between debtors and creditors, and this enables the business to prevent the process of insolvency from lasting several years. The regulations for selling problematic business will become more flexible, too. “In practice, this is completely new legislation, and it introduces a lot of new aspects that distinguish it from the current law. The general process has become more organized, and this aspect motivates everybody – creditors, debtors, tax office. The Government’s decision to bring the tax office into alignment with unsecured creditors is a serious breakthrough, and this is the ideal practice”, Lasha Nodia said. The bill’s details are still being worked on, but the already agreed upon innovations are very important, and there are no necessary comments about them, Nika Nanuashvili noted. “These innovations are very important, and positive. These remarks may refer only to aspects of the procedure that will be specified together with the bill’s authors. In addition, we are consulting with our members. Nevertheless, I can say that there are no necessary comments regarding this bill, and we back this initiative. This is a real breakthrough”, Nanuashvili noted.

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Nutsa Shavladze: "I See Technologies as a Means of Communicating With the Public more Efficiently" Interview with Communications Director of Georgian Business Association, Nutsa Shavladze. Tell us about how you got into the field of marketing, and what factors played an important role in choosing this profession? My specialty is international relations, and I have a master's degree in this field. I chose Journalism as a minor, and am currently a PhD student in Mass Communications at Tbilisi State University. I hope to present my doctoral thesis soon on the principles of public relations and visualization. Why this specialty? Because I always had a great deal of interest in the people who lived in this business. Truth be told, the term "fourth estate" proved to be very appealing, as it reminded me of the fact that it was directly or indirectly in the service of the people, where you, as an individual, could show and tell the truth to the public. Truth is, it is a value that plays a special role in the lives of people, we seek the truth everywhere and in all things, we want to be righteous. Perhaps this desire exacerbated the determination that this specialty was chosen as a field for which I work with great enthusiasm, and full force. What challenges do you face as a leader in marketing, during a time of technological change? Technologies are the true luxury of the 21st century. There are many more exciting things ahead of us in this regard. I see technologies as a means of communicating with the public better, more efficiently, and faster. There should be concepts, ideas, tasks relating to communication. I'm glad to be doing this right now and today, because you could imagine, for example, Joseph Pulitzer, using modern technology, that we have access to; how much more interesting news we could learn from him, his personal or other public affairs. Modern technologies make working in this field even more interesting. Disseminating information, finding a broader audience for that information, and taking over new spaces. Modern people should be provided with the entirety of information, and progress is very valuable in this regard. New media technologies must also serve people. What has changed in the field in the last 5 years, and what changes are expected? Professionalism, quality, raising standards. everything changed. Growth and development are obvious. The jobs we are doing are not simple, and it is necessary to understand them. So I think we need to learn to appreciate, support, and enjoy each other's success, as it strengthens us even more. It empowers both us, and the community as a whole. What do you think are the most important qualities a marketing manager should have, and what is his or her role in the organization in general? Perhaps I will be banal, but I will have to repeat the phrase PR's role in the organization is crucial. One can do very good things, benefit the community in particular cases, but no

one will know unless you talk about it aloud. I don’t mean populism; when somebody is doing something, just say it out loud, but a need that even the same community or particular target group knows what benefits you can bring to them. This sets up our expectations. As for the qualities, of course, someone working in this field must be curious, a natural searcher, energetic, as well as restless, with a talent for big picture analysis and perception. One must be incredibly hard working, and avoid complacency. One should constantly be focused on innovation and creativity. What do you do to keep the organization from falling behind on the latest trends, and keep applying innovative approaches to marketing? All instruments are being used. Starting from tech startups to the methods that are fundamental to our field. I believe that the most important thing at this time is to make sure you do your job in a good, faithful and honest way. What is needed for successful communication with the public? Sincerity, empathy, and the right choice of words are essential to building successful communication with the public. Proper timing and proper forms. One word that describes your job. Communication. The most useful advice you’ve ever received in your life.

I received the most useful advice in life from my father, when I was a child. While living abroad, my parents used to take me figure skating; usually, my mom would take me to attend a class. I remember one day, my father came back early from work, and arrived to pick me up with my mother. I remember the feeling of wanting to show him how gracefully I danced, but I slipped and fell down. The horrible feeling of shame, defeat, expectations that didn’t come true. That’s when I heard his voice, "Come on sweetie, don't stop." I got up and continued to skate, and after that I still hear these words when I encounter every obstacle, and it gives me the strength to do more. Think of a person who inspires you professionally. Here, one can remember a lot of talented Georgian people, and I’m very grateful to them, but not to miss out anyone, I will recall foreigners. Speaking of professional inspirations and just that, I would highlight Oprah Winfrey. She is a symbol of hard work, struggle, and victory for many people. For me, she is the quintessential strong woman, who can speak up on important, painful, and truly essential issues. A woman who has the moral right to speak on these issues, and is committed to principles in both their professional and personal lives. And the biggest inspiration, in the professional sense, to me, is this quote: "The secret to success is that there is no secret - work hard and reach your goal."

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Business News

Mariam Kvrivishvili Comments on Establishing New LEPLs for Managing Resorts

products in the Region. Having announced the year of 2020 as the time of innovations, the bank has introduced the so-called Face Recognition, that is, Pay by Smile service at Tbilisi Underground.

As noted by Mariam Kvrivishvili, director of the National Tourism Administration, it is reasonable to establish Legal Entities of Public Law (LEPLs) with the aim to carry out resorts management. The structure of the new LEPLs has not been specified yet, but this will be an effective decision, Kvrivishvili said.

Largest Business Accelerator 500 Startups Enter to Georgia Supported by Bank of Georgia With the support of the Bank of Georgia, the world's top accelerator 500 Startups will enter Georgia. The relevant trilateral agreement has already been signed between the Agency for Innovation and Technology of Georgia, 500 Startups and Bank of Georgia. Guramishvili’s Marani Wine Wins Golden Medal at Sakura Awards in Japan

Modern Classic Movie Series Continue in Film Theater Amirani Supported by TBC status, modern classic movie series continue in the film theater - "Amirani". The marathon of film collection is renewed with Richard Stuart Linklater Trilogy.

The Guramishvili’s Marani Grand Reserve Brut 2015, the Sparkling Wine by Guramishvili’s Marani company has won a golden medal at Sakura Awards in Japan. A total of 4 333 wine varieties had been represented at the event from 29 countries. The wines were assessed by 560 experts.

Building of First Multifunctional Center to Start in Varketili In Tbilisi, in the suburb of Varketili, planned by Mayor Kakha Kaladze and Chairman of City Council, Giorgi Tkemaladze, the first multifunctional center is being built. As Kakha Kaladze declares, building of the similar complexes are also planned in the other regions of the city.

Digital Neobank Space Advertizes Vacancy on Manager’s Position in Germany Digital NeoBank SPACE has advertised a vacancy on a manager’s position in Germany. As published on one of the German websites, SPACE plans to launch operation in Germany. Air Company Myway Airlines to Increase Frequency of Flights in the Direction of Tel Aviv The air company, Myway Airlines is increasing the frequency of flights between Tbilisi and Tel Aviv in the Summer season. From the 1st of June, on Monday fourth, and from June 30th, on Tuesday fifth flight will be added.

"Manuscripts Reveal the Hidden" Exhibition in Netherlands

Bank of Georgia Introduces Unprecedented, Innovative Products in the Region

Embassy of Georgia hosted an exhibition "Manuscripts Reveal the Hidden" on February 17th in Netherlands. The exhibition was about #Abkhazia jointly initiated by the Georgian National Centre of Manuscripts and the Office of the Minister of Justice and Civil Integration Issues of the Autonomous Republic of Abkhazia.

Bank of Georgia continues introducing innovative

JTI again recognized as Top Employer in Georgia JTI (Japan Tobacco International) in Georgia has been officially recognized as Top Employer 2020 in Georgia, Europe, Asia Pacific and Globally. Organisations certified as Top Employers dedicate themselves to providing the very best working environment for employees through their progressive ‘people-first’ HR practices. JTI has been recognized as Top Employer for the seventh consecutive year since 2014.

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Georgia’s honey exports have declined, year on year. As reported by Geostat, the national statistics service of Georgia, in 2019, the country exported 6.5 tons of honey worth 56,300 USD, while the 2018 exports made up 21 tons worth 69,500 USD. 2017 exports totaled 2.2 tons worth 15,800 USD, 2016 – 3.8 tons (21,200 USD), 2015 – 8.3 tons (73,100 tons). In order to popularize Georgian honey on international markets, the Georgian Beekeepers Association has developed two important platforms: and The websites update those interested on the diversity of Georgian honey, geographical biodiversity of Georgia, and its natural wealth. The website’s users are also able to receive detailed information on the region’s nectariferous plants and the Georgian bee. Nevertheless, two websites and several video clips turned out to be insufficient to change the reality reflected in the Geostat report. Beekeeper Irina Lortkipanidze talks about the government’s role, and asks it to assist in making Georgian honey more visible on international markets. “The Georgian Beekeepers Association has created two websites. Earlier, we did not have a website on Georgian bees. The Agriculture Ministry is holding various meetings to assist us in popularizing Georgian honey. Without this official support, our efforts will be useless. To grow our visibility, we need video commercials, active AD campaigns. The consumers should be persuaded that Georgian honey is the best in the world. All beekeepers should aspire to produce the best honey, place the product into good vessels, all standards must be protected, and only after that will we achieve the desired results”, Irina Lortkipanidze said. As noted by Aleko Papava, the Georgian Beekeepers’ Association Director, the popularization of Georgian honey on the international market is of crucial importance for the honey business’ development. The interest in Georgian honey has grown, irreversibly, he added. “ is dedicated to Georgian honey today, while www.jarahoney. com describes Jara Honey, that is, the traditional Georgia beehive used from ancient times for breeding bees. Jara Honey is a very rare and high-quality organic, wild product. It is an absolutely clean and wild honey. This is our tradition of beekeeping, and many people

should learn about this worldwide, about our history. We have also prepared promotional video materials. All these efforts have raised a lot of interest. We receive letters from Britain, Asian countries. They demand that we introduce our products to them, and naturally, we should intensify our efforts in this regard”, Aleko Papava noted. Furthermore, the authorities should subsidize honey analysis tests to rescue the field, he added. As explained by Aleko Papava, accredited laboratories issue to let Georgian honey enter export markets. Laboratories request high fees for these tests, and beekeepers cannot take on these costs. The official subsidies allocated to the beekeeping sector is 150,000 GEL. The Beekeepers Association offers a special scheme to the Georgian authorities to tackle the problem, Papava pointed out. “The key problem is that there are only 2 or 3 enterprises to cooperate with, and this does not suffice. We need more enterprises, and we should provide a lot of jobs in this field. Another problem is related to subsidization of laboratory tests. One test costs about 3,000 GEL, and this is a serious burden on beekeepers. We want the Agriculture Ministry to subsidize this direction. The initial cost for identifying the honey naturality is about 150 GEL, and beekeepers are able to cover this sum themselves. They also need screening tests that cost about 700 GEL. We can negotiate the issue with the Government to split this sum, because 700 GEL is not a small amount for beekeepers. The most important thing is that not all beekeepers are able to export their products, while exports are carried out by an enterprise that provides honey coupage. Can you imagine how many samples one enterprise can receive? To reduce risks and gain the interest of potential investors, we need subsidization. As a result, 50% of the total costs will be covered by the government, and another 50% will be covered by a mediator company. We are waiting for the response from the Agriculture Ministry to discuss our problems, the field’s trends, and how to overcome obstacles together. We have definitely improved all indicators. Imperfections in Georgian honey have been minimized, and in 2021 we will attain better results”, Aleko Papava noted. In 2019, the National Food Agency collected about 100 honey samples, and sent them to

the Institute of Food Safety, Animal Health and Environment Protection. The test in 2020 showed better results. Only 8% of 100 samples were found with waste or forbidden antibiotics, while the figure was 54% in 2019. Imereti, Shida Kartli, Samtskhe-Javakheti, Mtskheta-Mtianeti and Guria – this is a list of regions free of waste or antibiotics. As noted by Gia Mikadze, the head of the National Food Agency’s Department for Food Safety, positive developments come from permanent communication with beekeepers. Several training sessions were held on how to prepare. As noted by Mikadze, beekeepers were able to receive information on forbidden substances that are strictly regulated by EU standards. ‘We started monitoring our honey tests in 2013. For many years, about 34% of 99 samples were found with defects, while the figure has decreased to 9% now. The results will boost honey exports to the EU market. We must update the European Commission on the results. As a result, confidence in our monitoring system, monitoring bodies and businesses have grown, because they received the desired result after many years of effort. I would also like to note that not only the official structures, but also nongovernmental organizations and consulting companies, have made a huge contribution to the field’s development, as they consult business operators about how to better fulfill their obligations”, Gia Mikadze. Aleko Papava, President of the Georgian Beekeepers Association is content with the analysis’ results. The gains will assist Georgia in finding a valuable niche on the EU market, he said, and added that Georgian honey will overcome all quality problems, and honey production will rise to 20,000 tons from 2,000 tons.

11 February 24, 2020 #315 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: 29167-40/41/42 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 Pixel Center, 34, Ilia Chavchavadze Ave. 3rd floor Tel: +995 32 227 62 00 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 Kingdom of Spain Embassy Rustaveli Ave. 24, I floor, Tbilisi Tel: 230-54-64 E-mail: emb.tiflis@maec.esRomania Embassy 7 Kushitashvili St., Tbilisi Tel: 38-53-10; 25-00-98/97 E-mail: Republic of Poland Embassy Oniashvili str. 24, Tbilisi Tel.: +995322 920398; Fax: +995322 920397 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, 291-2689/59 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: European Investment Bank Regional Representation for the South Caucasus Address: 1,G.Tabidze Street, Freedom Square

Phone: +995 322 006284 Embassy of The Republic of Korea 12, Titsian Tabidze Str. Tbilisi 0179, Geogia Tel: (995 32) 297 03 18; 297 03 20; Fax: (995 32) 242 74 40; Email: 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, HOLIDAY INN TBILISI Business hotel Addr: 1, 26 May Square Tel: +995 32 230 00 99 E-mail: Website: RIVER SIDE HOTEL With incredible service and views Addr: Mari Brosse street turn, Old Tbilisi. Tel: +995 32 2242244; +995 32 2242288 Fax: +995 32 2 242277 Email: 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 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, 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 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

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