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The News in Brief

Thursday, October 9
Future priorities of our country are basically built on development of economy - Giorgi Margvelashvili

The new government, as well as the coalition has very clearly defined that the future priorities of our country are to basically built on development of economy - Georgia’s President Giorgi Margvelashvili stated during the meeting organized by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

“The most important that happened this year is that Georgia signed the DCFTA Agreement and the Association Agreement with the European Union which is a very important milestone and an important asset for Georgia’s economic development. Through signing this agreement the European market which is the biggest market all over the world has been opened to Georgia and investors that are doing their businesses here. The achievement is important in several ways: we believe it will improve the quality of products that are developed in our country, it will further our economy as well as investments in our economy,’’ -Margvelashvili said. (IPN)

Gov’t expects pension increase in 2015

Hundreds of thousands of Georgia’s oldest residents will be offered more financial support thanks to a Government initiative to increase the state pension.

While the additional amount has not been outlined, a Government official said 1.36 billion GEL had been assigned to covering pensions in 2015.

On Tuesday Georgia’s Finance Minister Nodar Khaduri announced the minimum state pension would rise from 2015 but did not outline a precise growth rate.

While presenting a draft of the 2015 state budget at a Parliamentary committee hearing, the Finance Minister said the growth rate would be defined in the next two months when discussions on the document were finished.

Khaduri stressed the pension rise would also continue in 2016.

Chairman of the Parliamentary Finance and Budget Committee from ruling Georgian Dream coalition Davit Onoprishvili believed if the budget was revised, pensions would increase by five to 10 GEL at least.

"[A pension rise] will make it easier for the lawmakers to vote for the draft budget,” Onoprishvili said.

Khaduri’s announcement was met with criticism by opposition lawmakers who said the Government did not outline the resource it would use to finance the pension increase. (

Two Georgians detained by Russian border guards

Russian border guards on Tuesday detained a husband and wife in a village bordering breakaway South Ossetia.

The two, Kakha Kazishvili and Zina Natriashvili, were detained in the village Kvemo Ikorta as they were trying to cross the ‘border’ to visit relatives.

According to locals, there is no physical boundary like barbed wire, and it is difficult even for locals to discern it. Usually people used to move across ‘the border’ imposed by Tskhinvali separatist authorities more or less freely until last couple of years. As in the case of another breakaway Georgian territory, Abkhazia, Russian military that control the both borders has been tightening the rules to passage.

As usual, the detainees are accused of ‘illegally crossing the border.’ They have been taken to the village Artsev and handed over to South Ossetian police. (DF watch)

Hungarian diplomat appointed head of EU delegation in Georgia

Hungarian diplomat Janos Herman has arrived in Georgia to begin working as the new head of the European Union (EU) delegation to Georgia.

Ambassador Herman met Georgia’s Foreign Minister Maia Panjikidze and told her he was pleased to begin his duties, the Ministry’s press office announced.

The Hungarian envoy and the Georgian Foreign Minister discussed the implementation process of the EU-Georgia’s Association Agreement and the partnership priorities.

The Ambassador noted the Georgian Government's desire to deepen relations with the European Union said he was honored to come and work in Georgia.

"I have presented my credentials to the Georgian Foreign Minister but this is not the beginning of the bilateral relation between EU and Georgia. This relationship has been in progress for many years,” he said.

"The confirmation of this is the Association Agreement, which is a very important occasion not only for Georgia but for the international community as well,” Herman said.

The Ambassador stressed his future work in Georgia was one of the topics discussed during his meeting with Georgia’s Foreign Minister.

"Georgia is a very familiar country for me and I am enthusiastic to come here,” he added.

Herman was appointed as the new head of the EU delegation to Georgia by the High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice President of the Commission, Catherine Ashton on June 26.

Herman replaced Philip Dimitrov as Georgia's EU representative, who held the position since 2010.

The Hungarian diplomat previously served as EU’s special envoy to Central Asia. In his career he has held senior diplomatic positions within the Hungarian Foreign Ministry, including State Secretary and Permanent Representative to NATO. He has also served as Head of the EU Delegation to Norway.

In his younger years Herman studied in Budapest and Moscow and graduated in 1975 from the State University of International Relations in Moscow. (