TBILISI, DFWatch – Prime Minister Nika Gilauri recently claimed that Georgia is number one tourism country in the South Caucasus region. But in a ranking of quality of life it gets 214th place, and in a personal safety ranking 215th.

Mercer, the world’s largest human resources consulting firm, has published its 2011 Quality of Living Worldwide City Rankings. 221 cities are listed.

Tbilisi got the last place among Eastern European cities in terms of the both quality of life and personal safety.

According to the survey, living conditions in Tbilisi are worse than in Baku (195) and Yerevan (173). Moscow is number 163.

Living conditions are evaluated by ten categories, including economic, political and social environment, health, education, public services, natural environment and consumer goods. The countries are compared to each other according to 39 factors within these categories. Vienna is on the top of the list, while Baghdad is at the bottom.

Tbilisi also scored low last year, when it ended up on 217th place, followed by Khartoum (Sudan), N’Djamena (Chad), Bangui (Central African Republic) and Baghdad (Iraq).

“Georgia is the main tourist country in the region and we will see better results in the next few years,” Georgian Prime Minister Nika Gilauri said a few weeks ago.

The minister for economic development and the finance minister have said similar things, as did representatives of Georgia at the conference organized by British magazine The Economist in Tbilisi recently to attract investors to Georgia.

But Free Democrats leader Irakli Alasania argued at the conference, in a comment addressed to National Security Council Secretary Giga Bokeria, that while Georgia is trying to attract more investors and tourists to the country, it is sending out the wrong message to investors, making them scared that there is a Russian threat and Georgian security is really under attack.

Mercer is a human resources consulting firm with around 19 000 employees in 40 countries around the world.