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Parliamentary Secretary of the Gov’t: Structural Changes Do not Imply Staff Reduction

By Tea Mariamidze
Friday, June 29
Georgian Government’s Parliamentary Secretary, Natia Mikeladze, says that the structural changes in the ministries do not envisage reducing the staff.

Mikeladze made the statement on Thursday, commenting on the new names of the merged ministries.

“During the changes, people working in the ministries will not be fired, because we need experienced and good staff,” Mikeladze stated.

She explained that the budgetary funds need to be saved but not at the expense of the employees.

“Saving the administrative expenses is a part of the plan. Expenditure of state agencies and bureaucracy will be maximally reduced,” she added.

Mikeladze also unveiled the names of the new ministries which were formed due to merger of some state bodies.

According to her, the Ministry of Penitentiary and Probation will merge with the Ministry of Justice and its name - the Ministry of Justice will remain the same.

The Ministry of IDPs and Refugees will merge with the Ministry of Labor, Health and Social Affairs and its name will be – the Ministry of IDPs from Occupied Territories, Labor, Health and Social Affairs.

Moreover, the Ministry of Education is merging with the Ministry of Sports and Culture and it will be named the Ministry of Education, Sports and Culture.

The names of the ministries will be discussed in the parliament next week.

The changes were announced by the new Prime Minister of Georgia Mamuka Bakhtadze a few days ago.

The ruling Georgian Dream (GD) party says that in addition to reducing the bureaucratic expenses, the government is expecting future economic growth.

"The transition to small government will give us the result that bureaucratic expenditure will be reduced and will fall below 4%, which is the best indicator in Europe," Archil Talakvadze, ledare of the parliamentary majority stated.

He is sure that Bakhtadze’s plan will bring tangible results and benefits to the country and the population.

However, the opposition claims the government’s “ambitious plans” will require additional expenses.

Member of the European Georgia, Zurab Chiaberashvili says in addition to administrative expenses, there are many programs which are not necessary and need to be abolished.

“Changes are necessary, but also some programs need to be abolished. This would give the opportunity to the government to increase pension by 50 GEL,” he stated.

Georgian PM Mamuka Bakhtadze decided to reduce 14 ministries to 10. State Minister’s apparatus will also function.

Last year, Georgia’s former PM Giorgi Kvirikashvili reduced 18 ministries to 14.