Economy, News

Foreign investments to Georgia drops

by | March 11, 2013

TBILISI, DFWatch--Direct foreign investments in Georgia dropped by 47 percent in the fourth quarter of 2012, compared to the previous year, according to a new report by National Statistics Department, GeoStat. According to preliminary data, the total amount of

Economy, News

Russia approves Georgian wine and fizzy water

by | March 6, 2013

TBILISI, DFWatch--The Russian consumer safety bureau Rospotrebnadzor confirms that 36 Georgian wine companies and four mineral water companies are ready to enter the Russian market. On Wednesday, the agency, which is a federal service for protection consumers’ rights

Economy, News

Price drop for Georgian consumers

by | March 5, 2013

TBILISI, DFWatch--The level of inflation did not significantly change in February, 2013, compared to the preceding month. According to Georgian National Statistics Department, GeoStat, the national currency is up by 0.3 percent. Price changes in the following

Economy, News

Georgia sees a shift toward processing industry

by | March 1, 2013

TBILISI, DFWatch--Georgia's economy has shifted toward processing industry, after many years of basing its exports on used cars and scrap metal, according to an economy expert. New figures show that the country's economy is growing; and now, the export is no longer

Economy, News

Saakashvili’s gaffe about Russian banks taking over

by | February 28, 2013

TBILISI, DFWatch--President Mikheil Saakashvili is concerned that Russian banks lately have bought two Georgian banks and plan to make more deals with other banks in Georgia. The Georgian banks in question deny the content of what the president said. Also the banks in

Economy, News

Russia sends experts to examine Georgian wine making

by | February 26, 2013

TBILISI, DFWatch--Six Russian experts yesterday landed in Georgia to inspect the production process of wine with an eye to returning the beverage back onto Russian dinner tables. They are sent here by the Russian consumer protection agency CPS to inspect companies

Economy, News

More money flowing into Georgia

by | February 18, 2013

TBILISI, DFWatch--More than USD 94 million was transferred to Georgia from abroad in January, 2013. This is more than USD 10 million more than the same period in 2012. The total amount of money transfers in January was USD 94.1 million, which is 11.5 percent

Economy, News

Georgia expects 6 % growth in 2013

by | February 7, 2013

TBILISI, DFWatch -- Georgia’s finance minister Nodar Khaduri says the government expects 6 % growth in 2013, low inflation and reduced state debts. He also notes that 6 percent growth is the minimum estimate on which the Georgian government is working. The finance

Economy, News

Georgia’s foreign trade sees sharp drop

by | January 28, 2013

TBILISI, DFWatch -- Georgia's foreign trade turnover experienced a sharp downward trend at the end of 2012, according to precise data from Georgian National Statistics Department, GeoStat. Although it is mostly the month of December which shows an alarming tendency,

Economy, News

Ivanishvili to attend Russian breakfast in Davos

by | January 24, 2013

TBILISI, DFWatch -- Georgia’s Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili is invited to a Russian breakfast on Friday at the World Economic Forum in Davos. But Ivanishvili insists that Russian officials won’t attend and that he will only be meeting with Russian businessmen.

Economy, News

Petitioning to decriminalize white collar crime

by | January 23, 2013

TBILISI, DFWatch -- The party of President Mikheil Saakashvili has started a campaign to gather signatures in support of his initiatives about tax amnesty and decriminalization of financial crime. The president presented his new initiatives to the government a few days

Economy, News

Georgia’s foreign trade turnover grew 11%

by | January 20, 2013

TBILISI, DFWatch -- Georgia’s foreign trade turnover increased by 11 percent in 2012 compared to the previous year. Georgia’s National Statistics Department on Friday published a report which showed that the country's foreign trade turnover of goods was USD 10 220

Economy, News

Georgia is losing out on foreign investments

by | December 14, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch -- Georgia’s direct foreign investments have significantly decreased in the third quarter of 2012 compared to the same period in 2011, according to Georgia's National Statistics Department, Geostat. According to the new report, the total amount

Economy, News

LSE wants to educate Georgian business leaders

by | November 29, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch -- What does it take to get a company listed on London Stock Exchange (LSE)? That was one of the questions addressed at a conference in Tbilisi Tuesday, and who better to hear it from than the LSE itself, which organized the event. The goal of the

Economy, News

Georgia’s trade turnover grows 15 percent Jan.-Oct. 12

by | November 27, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch -- Georgia increased its foreign trade turnover with 15 percent in the first ten months of 2012. In plain numbers it totaled USD 8 521 million. Out of this, export was USD 1 985 million, while import was USD 6 536 million. The country's negative

Economy, News

Gulf owner buys more shares in company

by | November 26, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch -- One of Georgia's richest businessmen increased his share of ownership in one of the country's largest chains of petrol stations. Davit Iakobashvili is the largest shareholder in Gulf Company. According to Gulf's press office, he has now increased

Economy, News

Minimum wage increased one dollar in October

by | November 19, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch -- The minimum wage has increased by about one dollar in October compared to September, 2012, according to Georgia's National Statistics Department. According to GeoStat, the minimum wage for men of working age has increased from USD 89.7 to USD 90.7;

Economy, News

Russia considers lifting embargo on Georgian wine

by | November 16, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch -- Moscow is ready to consider allowing Georgian wine back onto the Russian market. Andrei Denisov, First Deputy Foreign Minister, said on Wednesday that there is a willingness on both sides to study the issue. "If we talk about specific cases, it is

Economy, News

Enguri hydro power station is still on Georgian hands

by | November 7, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch -- Georgia’s Energy Minister says Enguri hydro power station has not been sold but is the property of Georgia. He says there were negotiations regarding the facility but they were suspended. Energy Minister Kakhi Kaladze does not comment about

Economy, News

Ivanishvili practically shuts down Georgia’s Security Council

by | November 6, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch -- One of the controversial cuts Prime Minister Ivanishvili wants to make in next year's budget is to reduce funding for Georgia's National Security Council – which had a central role in protecting the country in the 2008 war – from USD 15 million

Economy, News

Interest rates will drop, says Bank Association

by | November 2, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch -- The president of the Georgian Bank Association says the interest rate on loans will go down. Zurab Gvasalia said there is already a trend of falling interest rates on loans, but he thinks it is impossible to decrease the rates immediately. In

Economy, News

Government considers planned new city Lazika

by | October 28, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch -- The new government has still not decided whether to implement Saakashvili’s idea of building a completely new city Lazika in Georgia. The new government have different ideas about the plan to build a city with half a million people on the Black

Economy, News

Georgia continues to increase its foreign trade

by | October 26, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch -- New nine month figures from 2012 show a 16 percent increase in foreign trade turnover compared to last year, equal to USD 7 595 million in total. The numbers do not include informal trade. According to Georgia’s National Statistics Department

Economy, News

Confusion over Georgia’s state financial assets

by | October 26, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch -- The outgoing and new government disagree over the size of the state coffers. Former government members claim that there is more than two billion lari, nearly USD 1.2 billion, in the state coffers. But new Finance Minister Nodar Khaduri says there

Economy, News

Saakashvili hands over record state coffers

by | October 9, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch -- Georgia's state accounts by are by September 2012 at one of the highest levels during the past few years at more than two billion, nearly USD 1.22 billion. The state budget for 2013 is 9 billion lari, USD 5.5 billion, which is more than half a billion

Economy, News

High expectations about low prices

by | October 7, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch -- One of the largest petrol companies reduced the price of petrol by 8 tetris. A spokesman for the new government believes it is possible to decrease the price by 20 tetris, or about USD 0.13. This comes soon after the leader of a coalition which won the

Economy, News

Energy gets largest share of investment

by | September 18, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch – The energy sector receives the largest share of direct foreign investments this year. Investments increased 7 percent in the second quarter of 2012 compared to same period in 2011, and totaled USD 219 million, according to preliminary figures

Economy, News

Ivanishvili sells off his last asset in Russia

by | September 11, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch - Georgia's richest says he has sold his last assets in Russia. A US fund purchases Stolenskaya Niva for USD 180 million. Russian media informs that Unikor Company, which manages Bidzina Ivanishvili's assets, has finished the sale of Russian assets.

Economy, News

SGS to monitor goods across Russia-Georgia border

by | August 23, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch – The Swiss company SGS will monitor the movement of goods on Russian-Georgian border from September 1, 2012. November 9, 2011, the governments of Georgia and Russia signed a deal which paved the way for Russia’s WTO membership, with Switzerland as

Economy, News

Cartu Bank fined USD 12 million

by | August 22, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch – A Georgian bank affiliated with the largest opposition bloc has been fined with USD 11 609 500 by the National Enforcement Bureau. The reason Cartu Bank, which is facing a series of problems after businessman Bidzina Ivanishvili decided to enter

Economy, News

Fuel prices go up 2 % in Georgia

by | August 8, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch – Prices for all types of fuel have gone up 5 tetri in Georgia, which is a two percent rise. The Oil Product Import Union explained the price rise with increased burning of fuel in summer, which always increases the prices of oil products internationally. Earlier, the

Economy, News

Temporary regulations affects Georgian banking sector

by | August 6, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch – A new report shows that legislative changes ushered in by the Georgian government to counter the influence of an opposition billionaire has hampered the bank sector. The report shows that new legislation about banks, tax and the executive made

Economy, News

Price fixing in Georgian food and fuel market 

by | August 5, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch - A new survey says that the fuel and food market in Georgia is an oligopoly.  The new study presented by Transparency International Georgia (TI) on August 3 is called 'Competition Policy in Georgia' and deals with the fuel and food market segments.

Economy, News

Merabishvili presents USD 12 billion action plan

by | July 3, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch – The government plans to spend four billion lari to develop agriculture, six billion on pensions, three billion on health insurance, three billion on social assistance and four billion on education. Changes have been made in the government, with

Economy, News

Agriculture and tourism failing: new report

by | June 30, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch - A new report shows that President Saakashvili turned his back on Georgian farmers in order to develop tourism, but the strategy failed. Six out of ten employed persons in Georgia are self-employed. More than 50 percent are employed in agriculture,

Economy, News

How pro-government TV sees Georgia’s weak labor code

by | May 21, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch – The labor code should contribute to employment, faster investments and motivate investors, and only after this may it possible to think about how to improve the rights and conditions of workers in Georgia. This is the position of the country's

Economy, News

Georgia’s labor code allows firing someone for political views

by | May 18, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch - There are two articles in Georgia’s Labor Code which entitles employers to terminate a labor contract without giving any explanations or preliminary warnings. A teacher from a village in the Gori region was fired because of her husband’s political

Economy, News

Georgia stopped publishing statistics on work place deaths

by | May 11, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch - According to unofficial information, 13 people died in the work place in 2011 in Georgia. No official numbers exist for 2012 either, but media reported about a number of fatal incidents in the mining and construction sector. These fatal accidents are

Economy, News

As Elit Electronics takeover is completed, ex-owner fights on

by | April 23, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch - One of the largest electronics chains in Georgia has been taken away from its founder, as the remaining 15 per cent of shares were sold at an auction. Anzor Kokoladze, who built the chain from scratch, is serving an eight year prison term after a tax

Economy, News

Why do many Georgians give their property to the state?

by | April 21, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch - There are many reports in Georgia these days of deprivation of property rights. People abandon their property or donate it to the government right after registering it at the Public Registry, and later refuse to speak about their reasons. The founder

Economy, News

Seeds of prosperity between Georgia and Armenia?

by | April 20, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch - How can Armenia and Georgia create more growth – literally – in their border region? Agriculture was the topic of a conference Thursday at Courtyard Marriott Hotel in Tbilisi. The goal was to exchange information on local planning and

Economy, News

Taxi drivers in Tbilisi hit by rising fuel price

by | April 14, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch - Givi Maisuradze (41) is one of many independent taxi drivers in Georgia’s capital Tbilisi. He works day and night and has been a driver since the 1990s, a period he calls 'the dark times', because the whole city was in darkness at night. Today,

Economy, News

As winter freeze hits Tbilisi, the garbage fee jumps

by | February 8, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch - Among all the other problems the weather is causing, Tbilisi citizens have one more worry: Their garbage fee has increased dramatically. A few months ago, a law amendment made the municipal garbage fee dependent on the electricity bill, so the more

Economy, News

Bankrupcy left workers in crisis

by | January 10, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch - Nodar has been working in Georgia's mountainous Bakuriani region for three years with his team of construction workers. But the company which employs him, Nola, has only paid him 2 000 lari out of the 16 000 he is entitled to. “So many today are in the same situation as me," he says outside of the National Executive Bureau in Tbilisi, where construction workers had gathered Tuesday to demand several years of back payment. “Some even have demands of 18 000," Nodar says. The company Nola sent Nodar's team to Bakuriani to build a security complex for the Interior Ministry on the order of BP. But a few years ago Nola went bankrupt. It had debts of nearly 11 million lari to the government and nearly 800 000 to the 450 workers employed at the different construction sites around the capital as well as in the regions. The workers went to court, and according to the Georgian Trade Union, two different judges reviewed the case. Both rulings -- in April and May of 2010 -- state that Nola must pay what it ...

Economy, News

Investment climate used to justify weak worker security

by | December 21, 2011

TBILISI, DFWatch - Georgian workers have almost no job security due to a weak labor code. This is a conscious policy choice by the government, justified by the need to attrack investors. The main problem Georgian workers face is that an employer can fire an employee at any time without explanation. That’s one of the findings in a new report about regulations in the labor market presented by Georgian Young Lawyers Association Monday at Tbilisi Metekhi Palace Hotel. The survey covers labor relations, or how the legislation regulates the relations between the employers and employees. There are also serious problems with labor contracts, and the issue of holidays is not properly regulated, so people often do not get the holiday they have a right to. Another problem is that people working overtime are not paid extra for it, even if he or she is ordered to do so by the employer. Often people are afraid to get fired and they ‘close their eyes’ on things like working extra hours, or not having their holidays. In this case often the employer abuses his responsibilities and takes ...

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