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Fish, honey and sheep could soon be exported to Russia

By Tea Mariamidze
Monday, August 25
Fish, honey and sheep could soon be exported to Russia from Georgia, Minister of Agriculture of Georgia Otar Danelia said on Saturday.

According to him, negotiations regarding the possibility are underway.

“As you know, we do not have diplomatic relations with Russia. However, we have trade relations with Moscow and we have already achieved some level of success in this regard. Accordingly, we are ready to boost trade ties with Russia,” commenting on the issue the minister stated that EU Integration is very important for Georgia and this path is irreversible.

“This process is actively underway; I would also like to declare that market diversification is our government’s priority,” Otar Danelia said.

Georgia’s Prime Minister Irakli Gharibashvili does not think that Russia will enforce another embargo against Georgia and claims that the list of Georgia’s products shipped to Russia is expected to expand in the short run.

"We have pursued intensive, constructive and pragmatic politics with Russia for two years already. We have succeeded in taking a number of constructive and aim-oriented steps, as a result of which, we have managed to export our produce to Russia thus far,” Garibashvili said, stressing that the absence of free-trade practice with Russia does not negatively influence the the two countries’ partnership in the economic field.

“On the contrary, we plan to ship more products to Russia,” stated the Prime Minister.

Some Georgian analysts believe that Georgia has more potential to export. However, a lack of laboratories and other facilities are an obstacle to the country’s export ambitions.

Georgian Parliamentary opposition United National Movement keeps accusing the current Georgian Government in associating Georgian economics with “politically grounded” Russian market.

A second group of analysts share this aspiration. They stress that Russia wants to attract Georgian products, and make Georgia’s economy dependent on the Russian market and use this as a lever against Georgia in the future.