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Global survey: Georgia continues to develop but rule of law still causes questions

By Messenger Staff
Tuesday, May 3
The 2016 Index of Economic Freedom released by the Washington-based Heritage Foundation says that despite global and regional challenges, Georgia’s economy has demonstrated ‘considerable resilience’.

The annual report measured the degree of economic freedom in 186 nations worldwide. It revealed in its recent survey that efforts by the Georgian government to eliminate corruption and restore fiscal soundness by revitalising the commitment to limited government have borne fruit.

“Two years of fiscal consolidation has kept government spending under control and ensured macroeconomic stability,” the survey said.

The report also highlighted that Georgia’s pursuit of greater economic freedom, reinforced by relative political stability, has made its entrepreneurial environment ‘one of the best in the region’.

“Large-scale privatization has advanced, and anti-corruption efforts have yielded tangible results. Deeper institutional reforms to enhance judicial independence and effectiveness remain critical,” the annual report said.

The Index of Economic Freedom created by the Heritage Foundation and the Wall Street Journal in 1995 measure economic freedom based on 10 quantitative and qualitative factors, grouped into four broad categories, or pillars, of economic freedom:

Rule of Law (property rights, freedom from corruption); Limited Government (fiscal freedom, government spending); Regulatory Efficiency (business freedom, labor freedom, monetary freedom); and Open Markets (trade freedom, investment freedom, financial freedom).

The survey divided nations into five major categories: Free (80-100), mostly free (70- 79,9), moderately free (60-69,9), mostly unfree (50-59.9) and repressed (0-49,9).

Through the survey 2016 Economic Freedom Score for Georgia was- 72.6 (out of 100; 100 is the best outcome); Economic Freedom Status: Mostly Free with a Global Ranking- 23rd.

With regards to its regional ranking, Georgia was 12th in Europe.

The overall score change since 2012 was +3.2