About Civil.ge
Eng | Geo | Rus
Last updated: 20:27 - 26 May.'16
RSS
Mobile
Twitter
Facebook
Georgian Diplomat: Scrapping Free Trade Treaty by Russia 'Not a Tragedy'
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 31 Jul.'14 / 11:57

Russia’s intention to suspend free trade agreement with Georgia was not a surprise for Tbilisi and it will not either be a “tragedy”, said Georgian PM’s special representative for relations with Russia Zurab Abashidze.

““Actually it was expected; we were not ruling out such a development while moving towards signature of the Association Agreement [with the EU],” he told Maestro TV on July 31.

“I do not think it is a tragedy,” he said.
 
Abashidze said the move is likely to make Georgian exports to Russia more expensive, making it harder for some Georgian products to compete on the Russian market.
 
“Some of our products will perhaps become more expensive on the Russian market, some tariffs will increase, others will be revised, but I repeat we have not been seeing big tragedy in this,” he said.

“We should get accustomed to it. When we are going towards Europe, its standards, when we want to become part of the European economic space, we should also be ready that such thing may happen,” Abashidze said. 
 
He said that there is “a political element” in this decision by Russia, but also added that Moscow had its arguments in respect of its concerns over Georgia’s deep and comprehensive free trade agreement with the EU.

A technical expert-level meeting was held in Prague on July 7 during which Georgian and Russian officials exchanged information on potential effects of Georgia’s free trade agreement with the EU on bilateral Georgian-Russian trade.

“Our take has always been that free trade with the EU does not in any way hinder our free trade with Russia; they [the Russian authorities] as it seems think otherwise,” Abashidze said.
 
The Georgian diplomat said it should neither be a surprise for the Georgian businesses, which have already experienced Russian embargo, that Moscow may one day “change rules of the game.”

“Yes, businesses may have some losses from this move by Russia, but our initial estimations are that we should not expect any big tragedy,” Abashidze said.

Georgian exports to Russia reached USD 134 million in the first half of 2014, a 3.2-fold increase, compared to the same period of last year.

Russian market accounted 9.4% of total Georgian exports in the first six months of 2014, according to the Georgian state statistics office, Geostat.

The increase is mostly due to exports of Georgian wines and mineral waters to Russia, which was banned by Russia up until late spring, 2013.

Latest News
26 May.'16 20:27
Tskhinvali Postpones Referendum on Joining Russia to 2017
Breakaway region’s leader was proposing holding of referendum this summer.
26 May.'16 17:53
Georgia Marks Independence Day
Georgian, U.S., UK troops fresh from joint drills marched in ceremony marking Independence Day.
25 May.'16 16:09
UNM Boycotts Parliament Sittings in Protest Over Kortskheli Violence
UNM MPs said they will not attend sessions unless perpetrators of attack are held accountable.
25 May.'16 12:39
Venice Commission Looking into Georgia’s Controversial Bill on Constitutional Court
Commission’s opinion is expected on Friday, Georgian President’s adviser said.
25 May.'16 11:53
Police Question Men Involved in Kortskheli Violence, But No Charges Filed
Six men involved in the attack against UNM leaders were questioned without being charged.
25 May.'16 09:27
Kerry Congratulates Georgia on Independence Day
“We see Georgia as a leading example of democratic progress in the region,” Kerry said.
24 May.'16 15:05
Interior Minister Comments on Kortskheli Violent Incident
Police plan to ask the court to issue arrest warrants, the Interior Minister said.
23 May.'16 13:37
PM Condemns Election Violence in Kortskheli, Says ‘Perpetrators should be Punished’
“There will be a need for more mobilization of law enforcement agencies,” he said.
23 May.'16 10:26
GDDG Wins in Seven, UNM in Two Localities in Local By-Elections
UNM, which fielded candidates in four out of nine localities, are set to win two seats.
22 May.'16 23:57
Saakashvili: ‘Ivanishvili will be Defeated This Year’
“There will be no compromises with this dark force,” he said.

About Civil Georgia
Civil.Ge © 2001-2016, Daily News Online
Registered office: 2 Dolidze Str, 4-th Floor.
53