New Strategy for Georgia
26 September, 2013
New Strategy for Georgia
European Bank for Reconstruction and Development will base its strategy of 2012-2015 for Georgia on three key challenges: fostering private investments, completing modernization of energy sector, and supporting Georgia’s regional and global economic integration.
If the Bank’s strategy of 2009-2012 was focused on supporting Georgia’s short-term crisis response after dual impact of financial crisis of 2008-2009 plus the short-term war with Russia in August 2008, the new strategy for 2012-15 will refocus on the long-term challenges of Georgian economy. However,
to a significant extent, the Bank’s ability to deliver on its objectives will depend on the progress of reforms, the Strategy paper points out.
To foster investments, the Bank will continue to pursue operations with private sector clients directly and, indirectly, via private banks operating in Georgia. As business environment in Georgia is generally good, policy dialogue activities in this area will focus on the unfinished reform agenda in the area of governance, rule of law, competition policies, and sectoral policies where the new government may redefine its priorities. As the Large-scale privatization, the main source of Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) before the crisis, is virtually complete, the Bank recommends Georgian authorities to shift its focus on greenfield domestic and foreign investments.
“Stimulation of domestic savings, possibly through the development of a privately funded pension system, would also support private investment. Financial sector policies should focus on completing the transition to inflation targeting and further strengthening of prudential supervision,” the Strategy reads.
The Bank will consider possible co-investment with the Georgian Sovereign Wealth Fund, as successor to the Partnership Fund, provided that its new status delivers strong corporate governance and fosters private sector participation. The Bank will seek to support the establishment of a sound legal and regulatory framework for the development of local currency financing, working with donors and other International Financial Institutions.
The Bank will focus on the projects in the industrial and agribusiness sectors as well as the financial sector, and will increase its focus on Small and Medium Enterprise development through promoting access to finance and integration into a viable value chain. In particular, EBRD will support the manufacturing sector, focusing on improving production technologies of processing companies aimed at reaching modern standards, as well as introducing strict environmental and health and safety standards.
On energy side, the Bank will complete the energy sector projects that were launched by the previous strategy, which aim to increase energy production and access to export markets. Future projects will foster private sector participation and will be supported by policy dialogue in the areas of domestic markets reform and introduction of modern regulatory frameworks.
The Bank will focus on projects in various areas including infrastructure, logistics, telecommunications and financial sector that would support cross-border economic activities. The Bank will support opportunities for skills transfer, to enable Georgian companies to take advantage of trade opportunities and become more competitive in a wider regional and international context.

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