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Opposition challenges statistical data

By Messenger Staff
Monday, August 1
Leader of the White Movement, Temur Shashiashvili thinks that the official data available from the statistical department does not reflect the reality of Georgia's economic situation and says that in realty almost 30% of Georgia’s skilled population is abroad. Labor migrants from Georgia supposedly send back more than USD 1 billion to their families. Shashiashvili thinks that in reality this figure is much more and that those living abroad send back more money to Georgia than it receives in direct foreign investments. According to Shashiashvili official figures are based on research showing that out of every 1000 Georgians actively employed, only 140 live inside Georgia. More than 300 out of 1000 work in Russia and more than 400 in the USA and elsewhere. He also mentioned that even though salaries abroad are several times higher than in Georgia, prices in this country are equal or even higher than in other countries. For instance petrol in Georgia costs more than in the USA, as does poultry and some other foods. Georgians even pay more for utilities than most Americans.