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The News in Brief

Thursday, November 26
IDFI's Meeting in Kutaisi and Batumi

On November 19th and 20th, representatives of the Institute for Development of Freedom of Information (IDFI) held meetings in Kutaisi and Batumi within the frames of the project “Open Data: Source of Changes and Innovations”.

Representatives of the public and the private and civil sectors, the media and other interested citizens attended the meetings.

Levan Avalishvili, the chairman of the board at the IDFI and project director, introduced data gathered from public entities to attendees and discussed accessibility and the ways of usage of this information for business-startups.

He also spoke about the current situation in Georgia regarding access to the Open Data and presented applications (a map of the active currency exchange bureaus in and notaries in Georgia) created by the IDFI by using public databases.

According to the results of survey, created by IDFI, attendees discussed the importance of availability of revealed various types of information.

Data bases of USA and UK and applications, created based on these bases was also discussed at

the meeting and compared to Georgian practice.

The IDFI has been implementing a project entitled 'Open Data: Sources for Changes and Innovations\ since September 2015; a website,, was created several months ago. Data bases owned by public entities are periodically published on the website in various convenient formats for citizens.

The web portal gives an opportunity to every user, representative of private sector or other interested person to become familiar with the data and use it to create applications, business projects and e-services.

Also, the IDFI monitors accountability, proactive disclosure, efficiency and public information availability at public entities within the frameworks of the project. (IDFI)

A 74-year old Georgian grand master, Nona Gaprindashvili, becomes a world champion once more

A legendary Georgian chess player, Nona Gaprindashvili, 74, once again became a champion – this time she won the Seniors World Championship. The championship took place in the Italian town of Acqui Terme, the tournament being held for four different age categories.

In Acqui Terme, where the championship among the women of 65 years of age or more was taking place, Gaprindashvili accumulated 7 points from 9 games, which is 0.5 points more than Tamar Khmiadashvili, another Georgian.

As a result, the first two places at this championship were taken by Georgians.

Nona Gaprindashvili is a five-time world champion., and a winner of 20 Olympic gold medals. In 1978 she became the first woman in chess to become a grand master and in 2001 her name was given to the Tbilisi Chess School. (Palitra)

EU extends mandate of Special Representative for Georgia

The European Union (EU) has extended the mandate of its Special Representative (EUSR) for the South Caucasus and the crisis in Georgia.

The EU announced the news in a statement published on its website on Monday.

The statement said the mandate was extended until February 28, 2017.

The current Special Representative for the region is Herbert Salber, who was presented to the role in July 2014. His task was to contribute to a peaceful settlement of conflicts in the region, including the crisis in Georgia and the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, as well as to encourage regional cooperation.

In particular, the Special Representative co-chaired and participated on behalf of the EU in the Geneva International Discussions that debate the consequences of the 2008 conflict in Georgia.

EUSRs promote the EU's policies and interests in troubled regions and countries and play an active role in efforts to consolidate peace, stability and the rule of law. The first EUSRs were appointed in 1996.

Currently, nine EUSRs support the work of High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini. (

Tobacco and alcohol price may increase

Tobacco and alcohol prices may increase. The government's proposal on Tax Code amendments will be considered in several committees.

If approved, starting from January, the price for filter cigarettes will increase by 20 tetri, cigars by 40 tetri, and the price one litre of some alcoholic beverages by 10-15 GEL.

The government requests a parliamentary discussion of the draft law. As stated, the bill will increase the 2016 budget revenues by about 90 million.

The United National Movement opposition party criticized the government's decision and said that they will not support the bill. (Rustavi 2)