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08.05.15 - 14.05.15

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EBRD Comes to Tbilisi for Three-Day Business Bonanza

Author: Joseph Larsen

This May 13-15 the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) will hold its 24th annual meeting and business forum in Tbilisi. The three-day event kicks off on Wednesday with a conference on infrastructure development. Thursday and Friday will feature panel discussions on topics ranging from the role of gender in business to green infrastructure and global capital markets. The business forum is co-sponsored by TBC Bank and will take place in venues across Tbilisi including the Parliament Building, Rustaveli Theater, and the Georgian National Museum.

Exemplified by the tagline “Investing for Change,” the EBRD aims to direct investment capital toward sustainable development in emerging markets. Particular focus is placed on “fostering the transition to market economies, whilst providing innovation, growth and transparency.” Founded in 1991 amid economic transition in Central-Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union, the EBRD currently funds enterprises in 30 countries spanning from the western Mediterranean to Central Asia.

Georgia follows 2014 host Poland and 2013 host Turkey, becoming the first country in the Caucasus to hold the event. Why was Tbilisi chosen as host in 2015? Firstly, the business forum is an affirmation of Georgia’s status as an emerging, dynamic economy. In a 2014 interview with The Report Company, EBRD Regional Director Bruno Balvanera commented that the “banking system in Georgia is one of the most developed in the region,” and that “in Georgia you have entrepreneurs that believe in their country and are committed to the country.”

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Diplomats in Brussels publish Eastern Partnership Riga Summit Draft Document

In preparation for the Eastern Partnership Riga Summit of 21-22 May 2015, Brussels has prepared a draft document that offers little to EU aspirant countries of Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. The summit was expected to provide concrete steps in the EU integration process for the three countries and there was hope that it would offer some indication that Eastern Partnership members would join EU at some point in the future.

Of the Eastern Partnership members, Tbilisi, Kiev and Chi’inгu signed the EU Association Agreement most recently and have since reaffirmed their desire to become member states of the European Union.

However, the document that will be advocated at the summit solely notes that: “in the framework of the European Neighborhood Policy and the Eastern Partnership, the summit participants reaffirm the sovereign right of each partner freely to choose the level of ambition and the goals to which it aspires in its relations with the European Union.”

The EU’s Eastern Partnership brings together the post-Soviet countries of Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia and aims to increase their ties with the European region.

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Politics

 Interview with Sozar Subari – Minister of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Accommodation and Refugees of Georgia

 Armenian Authorities Dismiss Georgian Concerns Over South Ossetia Meeting

Social/Society

 Wings for Life World Run Back in Georgia for Second Time

 Road Safety Campaign to Save Kids’ Lives in Georgia

Culture

 Voting Begins for the Annual Black Sea Jazz Festival Poster Design

 Documentary Film about Georgia Set for Release

Economy

 What Kind Of “State” Does a Country Need?

Business

 What’s in the Pipe-line at BP?

 EBRD Announces Photo Competition

Sports

 Sports Fixtures and Tables

 Interview with Davit Kajaia – Georgia’s Modern Legend of Motorsport

 
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