The messenger logo

Majority names Foreign Minister as its candidate to PM’s post

By Tea Mariamidze
Monday, December 28
The Georgian parliamentary majority named the Foreign Minister of Georgia, Giorgi Kvirikashvili as its candidate for the Prime Minister’s post after Irakli Garibahsvili resigned last week.

“I would like to thank Mr. Garibashvili. We have done much together and I was honoured to be the Vice Prime Minister during Irakli Garibashvili’ tenure as Prime Minister.

“I would like to thank him for expressing his confidence in me, as well as each member of the parliamentary majority…this is the greatest responsibility before the country and its citizens, and I will do my best to execute the responsibility,” Kvirikashvili has remarked.

The PM-designate, who must soon submit his proposed Cabinet of Ministers, has already named a candidate for the post of Foreign Minister, Mikheil Janelidze, who currently serves as the deputy Foreign Minister.

“As a prime ministerial candidate, at this stage I will submit to Parliament for confirmation the current composition of the government without changes – the team with whom I have been working from the very first day,” Kvirikashvili said in a recent written statement.

Kvirikashvili’s candidate has been welcomed by the President of Georgia, who said that he supported Kvirikashvili to the post.

The majority has already declared their endorsement of the candidate. The opposition described Kvirikashvili as the most balanced of the Georgian Dream Government team.

As Parliamentary Majority member, Vice Speaker Zviad Dzidziguri has declared, Parliament will vote for the new government on December 29.

For the majority of Kvirikashvili’s career he has been involved in the financial and economics sector in state and private businesses.

He was involved in politics in the late 1990s, then again three years ago when he revealed himself as amember of the Georgian Dream coalition (GD), established by former Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili. The GD coalition defeated the United National Movement (UNM) in the Parliamentary Elections in October 2012.

Before entering politics and shortly before the 2012 elections, Kvirikashvili was general director of the Tbilisi-based Cartu Bank, established by Ivanishvili. He held this position from 2006 to 2011.

From 2012 until September this year, Kvirikashvili served as the Minister of Economics of Georgia. On September 1, 2015 he was appointed as the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

Kvirikashvili gained his education in the United States and has more than 12 years’ experience in the financial sector.

According to government procedures, when the Prime Minister resigns, a new Prime Ministerial candidate is named by the majority. The new candidate should submit his proposal for the Cabinet of Ministers shortly afterwards, as when a Prime Minister resigns the power of each ministers is immediately suspended. Both the PM’s candidate and the Cabinet should be approved by Parliament, for which they should gain at least 76 votes out of the 150-seat parliament. The GD coalition currently has 85 seats in the legislative body.