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PM met Swiss ambassador over business problems

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Tuesday, April 28
Prime Minister Irakli Gharibashvili has held a meeting with Swiss Ambassador to Georgia, By Gvantsa Gabekhadze

Guenther Baechler, who has revealed his concerns in terms of the complications foreign investors are facing in Georgia.

The PM promised Baechler that the ministry of interior will show interest to the problems the ambassador is worried about.

“I had a very interesting meeting with the Swiss ambassador, who is our close friend and always eager to promote much for Georgia’s advancement. He explained me that one of the Swiss investors was cheated by his Georgian partners and the court made an unjust verdict. I will task the Interior Ministry to study the issue and in the case of crime all will be punished who committed any wrongdoings,” Gharibashvili said.

The PM claimed that business is absolutely free in Georgia and certain controversies occurred among business partners would be adequately responded to by relevant bodies.

Baecher said in response that he had a fruitful meeting with the PM and the sides have discussed several topics concerning the promotion of little and medium-sized businesses, apart from the cases related to investors and the court.

“We have touched upon the issues related to the audit and taxation. The Swiss side is always ready to support Georgia in various directions,” the ambassador said.

Meanwhile, businessman Archil Vekua held a press conference, where he accused the ambassador of making unfounded statements and exercising pressure on the court.

Vekua stressed that he won a trial against a Turkish national, Swiss resident Ali Riza Kizildag, who has personal connections with the ambassador and even used the embassy car to attend trials at Zugdidi Court.

Vekua claims that Kizildag was eager to grab his property.

“The court obliged him to pay 313,000 GEL in favour of me. Now the solution is appealed in the Kutaisi court. Two years ago we addressed to the ambassador to refrain from interfering in the issue. In the case if Mr. Baechler does not make additional explanations over the case, we will inform the Swiss President over his activities here in Georgia. We hope that the ambassador’s statements are encouraged by the lack of information from the Kizildag’s side,” Vekua states.

Recently Baechler gave an interview to Financial and said unexpected tax problems and fines are frequent problems for the companies which have invested in Georgia. He also stressed the incorrect verdicts made by the court.