GEL 50 Million to Rural Georgia
01 March, 2012

GEL 50 million will be disbursed to Georgian villages in frames of Rural Support Program this year. Governmental order on approving the aid has already entered into effect. It specifies that the sums will be redistributed in accordance with the village population.  It’s one more pre-election move, experts think. 

 

According to the order, GEL 2 thousand will be given to a village with less than 50 villagers, villages with population between 51-200 persons will get GEL 4 thousand, the settlements where

population number stands between 201-400, the government hands GEL 5 thousand, villages with 401-1000 settlers get GEL 8 thousand, and village where population reaches and exceeds one thousand, is supposed to get GEL 12 thousand.

The sum that remains after redistribution of  state budget-based GEL 50 million, will be distributed anew according to the similar scheme of redistribution per capita.

Government outlines target and reasonability of the rural support-enoted money only after consolations with the population of villages beforehand.

The program allows integrating granted sums to several villages so as to solve common problems like rehabilitation/cleaning of water supply main source, or sewerage and irrigation systems that supplies water to several villages.

Georgian economic analysts believe the state support similar to this here rural support falls in line with the pre-election campaign is a PR action generally rather than anything serious. This money is not sufficient to finance anything serious in regions like some business or farming project. Besides money turnover in this kind of rural support programs is quite non-transparent as nobody monitors them separately. Population of target villages does not closely scrutinize how sums are spent on works financed by rural support programs and they are controlled in frames of the entire state budget in fact.

However, such programs increased inclusion of rural population in spotting problems and finding due solutions ultimately, Davit Narmania, Executive Director of Caucasian Institute for Economic and Social Research, said in the interview with Georgian Journal.

“But the support makes about GEL 10-15 thousand generally that is not sufficient to finance anything serious just some light repair works. Besides, it would be better to make detailed layout of targeted works of the rural support program initially, it might increase transparency,” he said.

On the other hand, if government really thinks to assist rural Georgia it would be better to give bigger competence to self-governance bodies so as to dispose with their money at their own discretion. According to the currently effective self-governance system of Georgia, the state takes money from regions [through taxes and other tolls] in the state budget and then disburses them back through state transfers amount of which are calculated on equalization formula scarcely understandable to anyone.

“It would be fairer to leave some taxes in regions or give some preferences to give an impetus to regions development,” Narmania said.

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