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Caucasus common economic zone challenged

By Messenger Staff
Wednesday, July 1
During his Yerevan visit President Saakashvili stated that the southern Caucasus countries should strengthen their economic ties and suggested the creation of a common economic zone. Analysts have positively assessed this idea although mentioning that it is unlikely to be fulfilled in the near future. Saakashvili also mentioned that due to the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict this zone could not yet be fully implemented but said initial steps will be taken by Armenia and Georgia.

Some analysts think that economic integration between Georgia and Armenia could face some difficulties because of their different political orientations. Armenia is almost completely bound to the Russian economy but Russia considers Georgia its number one enemy and through its aggression has cut all economic ties between the two countries.

It is interesting to note that Saakashvili initiated the creation of a Caucasus market soon after the Rose Revolution during his visit to Baku. Georgia was then clearly the leader among the three countries as it had the ability to act as a mediator between Armenia and Azerbaijan.