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The News in Brief

Thursday, January 8
Georgia to build energy hub with Russias participation

According to Russian media, Georgia is going to build an energy hub with Russias participation in Supsa.

Sukhum-Moscow.ru has published the abovementioned information quoting the author of the project - Giorgi Chanturia.

According to the edition, the energy hub will be a sort of "Friendship Bridge" between the South Caucasus, Russia and the European Union. The project will cost 17 billion dollars and investors are to be attracted both from Russia and the West.

The first project within the formation of the energy hub will be construction of an oil refinery in Supsa. According to Giorgi Chanturia, the project was drafted by American companies as early as in the 90s but it could not be implemented for various reasons.

"Now is a time when Georgia can reinvigorate this project, especially given that it is almost ready. We will become an energy hub, an energy center of the Black and Caspian Sea regions," - said Giorgi Chanturia.

According to the " " ( All About Russia-Abkhazia Relations) edition, now it is important to make clear whether the idea belongs to Giorgi Chanturia personally or it is an official offer from Tbilisi.

The article says that Tbilisi is very interested in this mega-project and that there is now a fundamentally different approach, quite unlike Mikheil Saakashvilis policy that was aimed at minimizing or excluding Russias role from similar energy projects.

Author of the project believes that construction of the oil refinery can be started in September and that Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan may engage in it as well.

According to Chanturia, there also exists a pipeline project from Novorossiysk to Supsa through Abkhazia, which will enable Russia to connect its pipelines to the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan oil pipeline. (IPN)



Georgian PM to Visit Latvia

Georgian PM Irakli Garibashvili will pay this week a working visit to Latvia, which holds EU rotating presidency in the first half of 2015.

On January 9 he will participate in an official ceremony for launching the European Year for Development 2015 and together with Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics he will be among the speakers at a panel discussion on good governance and the role of effective and responsible institutions in sustainable development of countries.

Georgian PMs office said that during the visit, Garibashvili will meet his Latvian counterpart Laimdota Straujuma; President Andris Berzins; Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics, and parliament speaker Inara Murniece.

The PM will be accompanied by Foreign Minister Tamar Beruchashvili; Economy Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili, and State Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Davit Bakradze. (Civil.ge)



MP claims setting up of Interagency Council on Foreign Policy to provide positives

The setting up of the Interagency Council on Foreign Policy will contribute to more coordination and effective functioning, Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee of the Georgian Parliament, Tedo Japaridze said on Tuesday.

In my opinion, Georgias foreign policy is the process where we need more coordination, more debates and discussions, Japaridze said. According to him, there was coordination problem between the government and parliament.

The Interagency Council on Foreign Policy will be chaired by the PM. It will include: the Foreign Minister; the Justice Minister; the Defence Minister; the Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development; the State Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration; the Head of the Governments Administration and his deputy and the secretary of the state security and crisis management council; several MPs and Speaker of parliament Davit Usupashvili will take part in the activity of the council. (Frontnews)



Testing results of City Hall employees will be known in a month

In a month we will know what the results of the test, which was taken by the Municipal Employees. It is possible that additional testing will be held for some of the positions. According to NGOs 80% of municipal employees including high officials failed to pass the first stage of testing. The testing commission is guided by the city council officials. The commission also includes the representatives of non-governmental organizations. The director of an NGO Civil Development Agency (CiDA) says that it was necessary to include representatives of civil society to attend the interviews which would increase the transparency of the process. The Chairman of the Commission explained that a large number of observers would be disconcerting for contestants .The impartiality of the board members in the interviewing process is put under question by the opposition. (Rustavi 2)