FM Explains on Why Georgia Makes Euro500,000 Voluntary Contribution to CoE
By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Friday, April 12
Georgian Foreign Minister David Zalkaliani has provided an explanation on why the Georgian government has decided to voluntarily contribute 500,000 EUR to the Council of Europe (CoE) budget.
Georgian Prime Minister Mamuka Bakhtadze stated on Wednesday during his speech at the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) that Russia must pay its CoE membership fee and the issue must not become a reason for any change in CoE procedures or rules.
He stated that Georgia is grateful for CoE support over many years and was ready to make a voluntary contribution in its budget.
“The Georgian government has decided to contribute 500,000 EUR to the CoE budget as a sign of gratitude,” Bakhtadze stated.
Zalkaliani said that CoE faces a financial crisis due to the Russian decision and such contributions will help the council overcome the problem.
“Russia must not be given a chance to use its financial levers make an influence on the CoE activities, on its rules and procedures,” Zalkaliani said.
The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe deprived Russia of voting right in 2014 for illegal annexation of Crimea.
Moscow has no right to work at the Assembly’s managing body and to send observers on behalf of the Assembly.
In June 2017, the Russian government’s decision, in reaction to this situation, to suspend payment of its contribution to the budget of the CoE.
Russia’s annual contribution is Euro 33 million, which is 10 percent of the total budget of the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly.