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The News in Brief

Friday, March 6
EU introduces eco-innovative business practices in Georgia

Eco-innovation, resource efficiency and cleaner production were the main focus of an event held in Tbilisi, Georgia, on 25 February.

Organised within the framework of the EU-funded programme ‘EU4Environment,’ the event discussed how businesses, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), can become more cost-effective, productive and environmentally friendly.

The event was organised by the United Nations Environment Programme and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, with the support of the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia.

Green production concepts have already successfully demonstrated in Georgia that they can bear significant benefits for both businesses and the environment. The EU-funded ‘EaP GREEN’ programme, implemented between 2014 and 2017, identified scope for potential annual savings worth ˆ1 million in 50 industrial Georgian SMEs.

The ‘EU4Environment’ programme, running in Georgia and other countries of the Eastern Neighbourhood, will work on building SMEs’ capacity to use resource efficiency, cleaner production and eco-innovation. It will aim to optimise these businesses’ natural capital, increase people's environmental well-being and stimulate economic growth.

A number of Georgian enterprises will receive assistance in revising their business models.

Embassy of France Awards Human Rights Defenders

Public Defender Nino Lomjaria participated in an event hosted by the Embassy of France in Georgia, during which, the NGOs working in the field of human rights were awarded. The theme of the year was the protection of children's rights in Georgia. The event focused on the rights of children with disabilities.

“One of the most vulnerable groups of our community is children with disabilities, especially those living in regions since many schools are not adapted for inclusive education. In addition, since public services are mainly available in Tbilisi and other major cities, children with disabilities often have to leave their families and live in other cities.

We also have serious challenges in the field of mental health care, where the problem of deinstitutionalization remains unsolved. Given that public services do not function properly, the activity and efforts of non-governmental and community-based organizations are of particular importance,” the Georgian Public Defender said in her speech at the awards ceremony.

In 2020, the Embassy of France reviewed the activities of 13 Georgian NGOs and the Public Defender awarded the Parents’ Union for its efforts in the field of protection of children’s rights. The organization will receive ˆ 2,000 to spend on the purchase of specific timber equipment that will enable the NGO to continue vocational education and training courses for adults and young people with disabilities and their parents.

The Embassy of France also awarded Imedi Handicap for its dedicated efforts to build a daycare center for children with disabilities in Shuakhevi (Adjara).

With the event, the French Republic once again showed its strong and significant support to the persons and organizations defending human rights in Georgia.

New Recommendations on Coronavirus from the Interagency Coordination Council under the Prime Minister

Georgia's Minister of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Labor, Health and Social Affairs Ekaterine Tikaradze reported that the number of those infected with novel coronavirus has not grown and that the health conditions of the three previously diagnosed persons are stable and without complications. The Coordination Council has been informed that 120 persons are under quarantine at this point.

The Coordination Council has also been briefed on the implementation of recommendations on the prevention of the spread of coronavirus, including disinfection work at various institutions throughout the country and the cancellation of large gatherings in places of public circulation, including the postponement of indoor cultural and athletic events.

On the instructions of the Interagency Coordination Council, and with a view to preventing the spread of coronavirus, disinfection work will be carried out by state institutions providing the population with public services, also by Georgian Railways on trains and stations.

As it has been reported, the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development is calculating the damage the Georgian economy suffered as a result of the spread of coronavirus and will present detailed information at the next meeting of the Interagency Coordination Council.

As emphasized at the meeting, the Government of Georgia is actively cooperating with the neighboring countries to bring home Georgian citizens traveling from Iran and presently waiting at the Armenian and Azerbaijani borders. Their transportation will be carried out in line with the Health Ministry's protocol.

The meeting also underlined that based on the council's recommendation, temporary working groups have been created in the regions under the leadership of governors to bring together municipal mayors, chairs of assemblies, and heads of resource centers and non-profit legal entities. For their part, the governors are reporting daily to the Ministry of Regional Development and Infrastructure and the Prime Minister's Adviser on Relations with Regions Sozar Subari on the implementation of the Interagency Coordination Council's recommendations.