Georgian PM: Country to become regional business hub

Georgian prime minister Mamuka Bakhtadze has said that his government will pursue a strategy to make Georgia a regional hub for tourism, international business, logistics, education and innovation, the Georgian press has reported.

“The World Bank Group ranks us as number six in terms of doing business in the world. The Fraser Institute ranks us as number seven right after the US for economic freedom and in the reflection of our commitment to open government the Open Budget Index ranks us number five in access to government information,” said Mr Bakhtadze, adding that Georgia is ranked third globally in terms of low taxation.

Speaking at the World Affairs Council in the US, the Georgian PM described his country as a role model in the region and invited American enterprises to make investments. “Thanks to our location, our immediate regional market offers access to half a billion people, we offer a truly unique and vital geographic location for American business to reach European and Asian markets,” he said.

Discussing Russia’s occupation of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, Mr Bakhtadze emphasised that the two regions should be returned to Georgia, not by the use of force, but through democratic and diplomatic means, reiterating Georgia’s aspirations to join the European Union and NATO, as well as his government’s intention to sign free trade agreements with the US and France.