The report published by Transparency International Georgia evaluates the implementation of the Visa liberalization Action Plan which was handed over to the Government of Georgia on 25 February 2013. The final report examines the monitoring results of implementation of the four blocks from Georgian side by the March 2014. The following research only pertains to the first phase. i.e. the legislative reform, as Georgia has not yet embarked upon the active implementation phase.
Georgia has implemented a large portion of the EU requirements
Tuesday, May 13
The monitoring of the implementation of the EU-Georgia Action Plan on Visa Liberalization revealed that Georgia has implemented has a large portion of the EU requirements. However, certain issues remain that require reforms.
Currently, out of 31 EU requirements, Georgia implemented 13 of them fully, 11 – mostly, 6 – half, and one – mostly not.
Block 1. Document security, including biometrics
Out of 4 EU requirements given in this block, Georgia implemented 2 of them fully, 1 – mostly, and 1 – half.
Block 2. Integrated border management, migration management, asylum
Out of 7 EU requirements given in this block, Georgia implemented 4 of them fully, 1 – mostly, and 2 – half.
Block 3. Public order and security
Out of 14 EU requirements given in this block, Georgia implemented 6 of them fully, 4 – mostly, 3 – half, and one – mostly not.Block 4. External Relations and Fundamental Rights
Out of 6 EU requirements given in this block, Georgia implemented 1 of them fully, and 5 – mostly.
For the Government to fully meet the requirements of the Action Plan, we think, it should take a set of recommendations into account. Namely:
Flaws in document security
1. The timeframe for the complete roll-out of biometric passports is clearly established;
2. The relevant legislative act regulating issuance of a travel document to a person with a humanitarian status is prepared;
3. The relevant legislative act which would envisage permanent measures of registration for persons without documentation is made;
4. The establishment of the migration service, which will be responsible for collection and analysis of the data related to migrants, identifying irregular migrants, their detention and accommodation in relevant facilities is expedited;
5. Circular migration scheme is timely launched;
6. Instructions and internal directives by relevant agencies and officials, which will encompass the issues related to urgent assistance to returning individuals are created;
7. Instructions and internal directives regulating in detail issues concerning freedom of movement, healthcare, education, protection of labour and social rights are created;
8. Timely Inclusion of all agencies in the software for data exchange in order to guarantee that the data exchange between-law enforcement agencies is ensured;
9. The draft of the joint legal act of the Minister of Internal Affairs and Minister of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Accommodation and Refugees of Georgia is timely adopted;
Fight against organized crime
10. Further improvement of legislative and institutional framework in the field of fighting organised crime is ensured;11. Amendments to the laws to enhance the anti-drug efforts are made;
Fight against human trafficking
12. Statistical database (with guarantees concerning the protection of personal data), where the information would be divided based on the sex, age, type of exploitation, countries of origin/destination is created;
13. Fighting against trafficking for labour exploitation is further strengthened;
Fight against financial crime
14. The adoption of the strategy and action plan for fighting money laundering and financing of terrorism is expedited; Corresponding amendments to the Code of Administrative Procedure of Georgia on the issues related to money laundering are made;
15. The application of the Law of Georgia on “Preventing Legalization of Illegal Income” to electronic payment institutions(e.g. pay box and other electronic payment institutions) is extended; Sanctions under the law on “Preventing Legalization of Illegal Income” are strengthened and their effective utilization both to individuals and legal entities is ensured;
16. Competent body, together with the National Bank of Georgia, which will be authorized in extension of the time period for storing the documents related to financial transactions is determined;
17. Investigators of specialized financial cases are re-trained and standardized operational procedures of investigation are developed;
18. Corresponding legislative amendments abolishing the court’s jurisdiction to hear motions for freezing assets when they concern individuals, groups and associations which are included in the list of the United Nations is ensured;
Personal data protection
19. For the completion of the functions of the personal data protection inspector, development of the inspection methodologyis expedited;
20. Transfer to the earlier date of the application of the Law of Georgia on “Personal Data Protection” to the private sector is guaranteed;.
The report was prepared with the financial support of the Open Society Georgia Foundation (OSGF) and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida). The views expressed in the report not necessarily coincide with those of the donors, therefore neither OSGF nor Sida are responsible for the report’s content.