Economy
Business requires government prudency
23 January, 2014
Shortly after the new government took office, Georgian business acknowledged that it felt less under pressure than during the previous regime. But now, feeling safer, it wants less miscommunication and more attention.
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Milk and dairy products falsified
23 January, 2014
The majority of milk and dairy products on sale at Georgian trade outlets are falsified. The products are often made of vegetable oil instead of animal fat. Georgian legislation, despite international standards, does not prohibit the use of vegetable oil in production of dairy products. Government is seeking to adopt best standards, but most likely it will be six months before new regulations take effect.
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Gold vs. Culture
23 January, 2014
RMG Gold, an investor company involved in gold and copper mining in Bolnisi, in the Shida Kartli region of Georgia, may quit the business if Georgian government does not resume its licensing terms satisfactorily. Ministry of Culture and Monument Protection of Georgia (MCMP) is withholding a license to RMG Gold since it cannot decide if the territory in Bolnisi includes a historical monument of cultural heritage.
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Tax secrecy and corruption
16 January, 2014
The bill on easier access to tax secrecy creates corruption risks for government and undermines fair market competition. It aims to make tax secrecy law more liberal, ostensibly. It empowers the tax administration - the Revenue Service of the Ministry of Finances (MOF) - to dispense tax secrets or commercial secrets to the Georgian government as well as the Ombudsman, law-enforcement bodies or any other necessary body without the consent of the court or the taxpayer, if the need for this information satisfies legal mandates … but it has no right.
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Friendlier Russian visas for Georgian carriers
16 January, 2014
In 2014 Russia will make visa related procedures simpler and cheaper for Georgian carriers. Quotas are still being negotiated by Tbilisi and Moscow but sector pundits expect them to more than triple this year compared to last. The Russian route is also preferable to Georgian carriers unable to conform to higher European standards.
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Georgia claims to be “the cradle of wine”
16 January, 2014
The Georgian government has launched a project seeking scientific proof of its claim that it is the “cradle of wine.” Armenia contests the claim. Prestige at the international level is at stake.
Archeologists have discovered ancient artifacts convincing scientists that the South Caucasus region, considered in its entirety, is the cradle of wine. However, some scientists narrow it down to Georgia, where proof that viticulture was practiced in 8000 has been discovered.
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Financial sector slows
16 January, 2014
Georgia’s financial sector made good progress in 2013, based on statistical data, Georgian central bank has reported. However, between the lines analysts see just lukewarm progress, inadequate to boost the national economy. Statistics for the entire year are not yet available, but eleven months’ worth show that banks increased assets to GEL 17 billion – 18% growth compared to 2012.
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Georgian national currency vulnerable
16 January, 2014
Lari continues its movement down the depreciation path. Economists are concerned over possible speculation and an inadequate monetary policy.Lately the Lari’s depreciation against the dollar has doubled in pace. During 2013 the average was 2.4%. It started the year at GEL 1.65 against USD 1. In mid-December it was GEL 1.69. However, by the end of December depreciation doubled to 4.6%, and the downward trend exceeded 5.4% by mid-January2014, when Lari fell to GEL 1.75.
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The year 2014 – a turning point to Georgian economy
16 January, 2014
Georgian government believes the economic growth target of 5% is quite achievable this year. Almost 8% growth in November 2013 surely feeds the hope. Economic analysts and researchers think this year will be difficult but can be a turning point to growth and development if government undertakes a wise economic policy. Otherwise the economy is destined for complete failure.
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