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Prime Minister meets with US Vice President

By Tea Mariamidze
Monday, February 20
“The US Vice President emphasized the readiness of the new US administration to continue its strategic partnership with Georgia and expressed his hope to host the Georgian Prime Minister in Washington DC,” the Georgian Government’s press office stated after the meeting of Georgian Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili with United States (US) Vice President Mike Pence at the 53rd Munich Security Conference in Germany.

During the meeting, Kvirikashvili stated that Georgia, as a staunch partner and ally of the US, values the deep strategic partnership with the United States. The Prime Minister invited the US Vice President to Georgia.

Mike Pence thanked Kvirikashvili for Georgia's special contribution to global security.

Georgian PM also held a meeting with the United Nations (UN) Secretary General Antonio Guterres.

The officials discussed bilateral cooperation and the developments in Georgia's occupied territories.

Kvirikashvili informed the UN Secretary General of the hard situation along the occupation lines and human rights violations in the Russian occupied territories.

The parties emphasized the importance of the Geneva International Talks and the Gali Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism.

The Georgian PM once again condemned the so-called referendum planned in the Tskhinvali region, emphasizing that the international community should join forces to stand up to the provocative actions of the Russian Federation.

On February 17, Kvirikashvili also met with the President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, Mohammad Ashraf Ghani.

The parties agreed to intensify the trade and economic, transport and transit cooperation between the two countries.

Georgia's accession to the Energy Union, which will promote Georgia's alignment with European standards and will streamline energy issues, was discussed at the meeting of Kvirikashvili and Vice President of the European Commission and Commissioner for Energy, Maros Sefcovic.

It was emphasized that membership of the Energy Union will enable Georgia to improve its energy security and boost the development of renewable energy sources and energy efficiency.

The parties discussed important regional transit projects and Georgia's special role and importance in their successful implementation. The discussion also involved the second phase of the Shah-Deniz Project, also TANAP and TAP, which will increase transit of natural gas considerably.

The Prime Minister of Georgia invited the Vice President of the European Commission to participate in international conference in Batumi Georgia's European Way.

Steps taken in recent years in enhancing cooperation with the Arab states in various fields was the main topic of conversation between Kvirikashvili and Secretary General of the League of Arab States, Ahmed Aboul-Gheit. Key issues included the enhancement of diplomatic relations and further economic cooperation.

Kvirikashvili also emphasized the importance of deepening trade and economic relations with European partners.

"Estonia expresses full support to Georgia on its European integration path and we would like to emphasize our readiness to provide maximum assistance to your country in that regard,” President of Estonia Kersti Kaljulaid stated during her meeting with the Prime Minister of Georgia.

The parties emphasized the importance of the positive dynamics in the cooperation process, particularly in a view of the fact that Estonia is becoming the president of the Council of the European Union in 2017.

The PM thanked the President of Estonia for the active part played during the EU-Georgia's visa liberalization dialogue.

The parties also discussed the Open Government reform in Georgia, which is largely derived from the Estonian experience.

The annual Conference gathered around 500 leaders and important decision makers to discuss current crises and future challenges facing international security.