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The News in Brief

Wednesday, April 10
Georgian, Turkish Presidents Meet in Ankara

President Saakashvili met his Turkish counterpart Abdullah Gul in Cankaya Presidential Palace on April 9. The meeting was initially planned for Monday, but it was rescheduled after President Saakashvili suffered “triple shoulder fracture” in an accident while riding a bicycle during a routine workout in Istanbul on Sunday. The president’s administration said in a brief statement on Monday that he was taken to a hospital in Istanbul where he “underwent surgery.”

However, on Tuesday, Saakashvili’s administration informed that the two presidents discussed deepening of bilateral cooperation. “Turkey is Georgia’s strategic partner, which fully supports our country’s NATO integration,” it said, adding that the two presidents have also discussed economic cooperation.

President Saakashvili met Turkish PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Istanbul on April 6. (Civil Georgia)

London firm reveals Tbilisi government building

Robin Monotti Architects has revealed its designs for a new business centre for the government of Tbilisi, Georgia.

The London-based firm is for a 16,000 sqm. building spread across 16 stories that will sit alongside the Soviet-era Bank of Georgia .

The offset plans will allow outside relaxation spaces on each level and will use solar control glass to reflect more than a third of the sun’s energy.

The design has been approved by all the departments of the local government of Tbilisi. (bdonline)

UAE, Georgia discuss investment projects

Dhabi Group head and UAE Minister of Culture, Youth and Social Development, Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan met with Georgian Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili, the Prime Minister's administration said on Monday. The ministers of economy, energy and education, as well as representatives of the partnership fund, attended the meeting.

The Dhabi Group head is in Georgia with his children. A 20-strong delegation arrived from Abu Dhabi to Georgia on Monday morning. The parties have discussed several investment projects. (Trend)

Georgian NCompany suffered 1 million GEL damage in railway accident

Georgian NCompany suffered 1 million lari in damage as a result of a railway accident in Tbilisi. The reason of the accident resulting in fuel leakage was the malfunction of an electric locomotive, the Georgian Railroad told Trend on Monday. According to owner Nukri Gegelashvili, 12 wagons of fuel leaked out of the five tanks due to the derailment.

Gegelashvili assumes that the responsible party is the Georgian Railway. According to him, diesel fuel was being imported by the company "Grand".

Representatives of the Ministry of Environment Protection arrived at the accident scene. According to the ministry's representative Guram Bejanishvili, it is necessary to learn the amount of leaked fuel in order to determine damage to the environment. (Trend)

Mineral and fresh water dues to increase in Georgia

A move to increase mineral and fresh water prices was decided upon by the Commission of Natural Resources of Georgia on Friday.

Accoridng to the decision, the price on mineral water will be tripled and the price on fresh water will be doubled.

Dues for fresh water are to be 8 GEL instead of 4 and mineral water dues are to be 9 instead of 3 GEL, the Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia Georgi Kvirikashvili said.

"We think that mineral water should cost more than fresh water. Regarding dues on brands, in the case of Borjomi, it is to cost 30 instead of 10 GEL; Nabeglavi is to become 18 instead of 6 GEL, Sairme 18 instead of 6, and Utsera is to be 12 instead of 4 GEL," Kvirikashvili said.

The minister believes that companies are not to incur extra losses, as they have a rather big resource of cost optimization.

Along with that, he hopes that the producers will not raise consumer prices for mineral water after the increase in taxes. (Trend)

New details emerges in infant’s murder case

A new detail has emerged in the investigation of the murder case of ten months-old Barbare Rafaliants. The family of the baby says that they found a sports bag on the bottom of the clay container, in which the baby was found drowned. The family emptied the container only a few months after the murder.

The grand-mother of the child says the bag does not belong to any of their family members. The bag has been taken away by the detectives, but they were not informed about the results of the expertise. The family calls on the law enforcers to speed up the investigation. (Rustavi 2)

Former members of UNM form a new faction at Sakrebulo

A new faction has been formed at the Tbilisi self-government Sakrebulo, three members of which are the former members of the United National Movement faction of the same assembly. Giorgi Kveladze, Davit Jintchadze and Gela Omanidze deny any fact of pressure on them from the government and state that to leave the UNM faction and join a new one was their own decision. (Rustavi 2)