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Rally against fuel prices

By Tatia Megeneishvili
Thursday, December 25
Members of political parties and NGOs held a joint march in Tbilisi on December 24 in protest of the high cost of fuel.

Demonstrators have stressed that compared to the world’s price on fuel, the cost of the product in Georgia was unreasonably high.

Leader of the opposition (Georgian Troupe) Jondi Baghaturia accused the government of cheating people and doing business with oligarchs.

“By keeping the price of fuel high, the government has already stolen 488, 400, 000 GEL from the Georgian people. This is a cartel conspiracy and members of the Georgian Dream are involved in the illegal process,” stated Baghaturia.

The rally representatives also blamed the government for taking high salaries and bonuses, while people have to live in poverty.

“They are taking money from our pockets, through the high cost of fuel and some other means. We demand a normal price on fuel. It is obvious and known that the fuel price influences other product costs as well,” the people said.

Earlier this month, Prime Minister Irakli Gharibashvili appealed to the Competition Agency and asked the body to specify reasons for the unchanged price of fuel in Georgia.

“I ordered the Agency to find out more about the issue. We know that the fuel price has dropped significantly on the world market. However, it has not been reflected on the prices in Georgia,” stated the PM.

According to statistics, the price of crude oil is $59 per barrel. This price is the lowest during the last five years. The price of fuel decreased by 40% in the course 2014.

However, Georgian companies decreased the price on fuel by only 20-25 tetris during the last few months and the cost is still up to 2 GEL per liter.