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The News in Brief

Friday, April 24
Georgia receives awards for successful reforms

Georgian Parliament Speaker Davit Bakradze has accepted a special award in Vienna on behalf of the Government. Georgia is the leading reforming country in Europe and Central Asia, and the fifth in the world, according to performance studies made over the last five years by the World Bank, and has thus been given this award.

The report on reforming countries is divided into five sections was prepared by analyzing data from150 states. Georgia tops the list of European and Asian countries and that of the countries which have reformed their tax systems and financial sectors. “This great honour demonstrates that all the reforms carried out in Georgia over the last five years were correct,” Bakradze said.

Georgian Finance Minister Kakha Baindurashvili also said that it was a huge success for the country. He added that this would mean “additional investment” in Georgia. “This once more underlines that our reforms had specific results for the country,” Baindurashvili said. (The Messenger)

Mikheil Saakashvili – We’ll do everything to maintain stability

Despite the wishes and dreams of some we’ll do everything to maintain peace in Georgia and ensure bloodshed does not reoccur as a result of either foreign aggression or public confrontation, Mikheil Saakashvili, the President of Georgia, told employees of the Interplast factory in Lilo yesterday.

The President said that Georgia faces economic problems today and in order to develop business it is essential and vital to maintain the peace and stability of the country. “No business is attractive without peace and stability. Without peace and stability no investment is implemented and no job place is provided. Instability is always the reason for lost jobs,” Mikheil Saakashvili noted.

The Georgian President stressed that all steps will be taken in both foreign and internal policy to maintain stability. (Interpressnews)

Benita Ferrero-Waldner – Despite difficult challenges, Georgia has advanced in several areas

European Commissioner for External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy Benita Ferrero-Waldner submitted a report on the implementation of the action plans of 12 countries participating in the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) in Brussels yesterday.

Commenting of the steps taken by Georgia last year, The Commissioner remarked that despite the problems Georgia faced it had managed to make certain progress. She encouraged further steps which would inject new momentum into political and economic reforms and accelerate Georgia’s economic integration into the EU under the ENP.

“I welcome the fact that Georgia was able to advance in several areas of the Action Plan in spite of the difficult challenges which have characterized 2008. The dramatic events of August 2008 and the prompt EU response have highlighted the EU-Georgia relationship’s importance and the relevance of the ENP as a solid foundation for strengthening EU-Georgia ties,” Benita Ferrero-Waldner noted. (Interpressnews)

36,044 customers of Energo-Pro Georgia left without electricity

Due to strong winds the electricity supply in various regions was suspended. 36,044 customers of Energo-Pro Georgia were left without electricity: in Samegrelo (6,917 customers), Imereti (11,699), Kvemo Kartli (5,700), Samtskhi-Javakheti (3,949), Shida Kartli (5,856) and Adjara (1,923).

Wind damaged electricity transmission lines and had originally left 63,288 customers without power, but supply had been restored to almost half of these by yesterday evening. Technical personnel localized the damage and restored the supply as soon as possible. (Interpressnews)

Georgian Foreign Minister pays visit to Finland

The Georgian Foreign Minister has paid a visit to Finland. Grigol Vashadze met Alexander Stubb, the Foreign Minister of Finland, the Minister of Migration and European Issues, the Diplomatic Advisor to the President of Finland and the country’s Foreign Trade and Development Minister.

The main issues discussed at the meetings were the current situation in the occupied territories of Georgia, the Geneva talks, and the interaction between Georgia and the UN. Grigol Vashadze also delivered a lecture at the Survey Centre of Helsinki University (Rustavi 2)