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Papava: Russia already too deeply invested in Georgia

By Messenger Staff
Monday, March 19
Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili has enthusiastically invited Russian business people to invest in Georgia. Yet economic analyst and former Minister of Economy, Lado Papava, warns against such a move.

The country's northern neighbour has already invested in the energy sector, electricity supply and distribution, gas supply, mining industry, communications, banking, water supply, and other industries in Georgia. The situation once caused a Russian businessman to remark that Russia should attempt to re-occupy Georgia not through military means, but financially.

Papva says that Russian ownership in such important sectors is dangerous for Georgia, citing geography as a factor, as it could further facilitate the integration of Georgia into the Russian economy. According to him, although President Saakashvili says he is pro-Western, his policies are moving the country closer to Russia, if only economically.