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Compiled by Messenger Staff
Friday, February 15
How much does higher education cost in the South Caucasus?

Georgia is the country with the highest cost of higher education in the South Caucasus. At private Georgian universities the average annual cost of tuition is 6950 GEL, compared to 6150 GEL in Azerbaijan and 3075 GEL in Armenia. In Russia the average cost of university tuition is 4500 GEL, while in Ukraine it is 3980.

At Georgian-American University annual tuition costs 6000 GEL; at Black Sea International University between 4600-5750 GEL; at Free University 6950 GEL; at Caucasus University between 5900-6400 GEL and at the Georgian Institute of Public Affairs (GIPA) 5000 GEL.

However, tuition costs at Georgian public universities are considerably lower compared to the other South Caucasian countries. For example, at Tbilisi State University, Ilia State University and Georgian Technical University annual tuition costs approximately 2250 GEL.

Government hopes to increase the population

The Fund for Demographic Development plans to introduce its views how to change the demographic situation in Georgia. Netgazeti reports that Tamar Chiburdanidze, a member of Georgian Dream-Democratic Georgia said on February 14th that the current Georgian government is concerned over the demographic situation and is actively engaged in how to increase the population.

She said the demographic situation has especially deteriorated in the 7-8 years. The United Nation’s report sent to the former government emphasized that a “demographic catastrophe” is inevitable in Georgia with the population expected to decrease to around 3 million or less by 2050, while the Azeri population is expected to increase to 11 million during the same timeframe.

Chiburdanidze accused President Mikheil Saakashvili of hiding the UN report from the public. She said the Parliamentary Healthcare Committee and its member Dimitri Khundadze are actively thinking of solutions to the problem.

Chiburdanidze said the Fund for Demographic Development will propose privileges for families that have three children or more. The fund will start an informative campaign in regions like Kakheti and high mountainous regions where the demographic problem is most acute.