Georgian Prime Minister touts Chinese and Indian investor to invest in Georgia
04 November, 2010
Georgian Prime Minister touts Chinese and Indian investor to invest in Georgia

To give an impetus to the sluggish foreign investment inflow to Georgia, Nika Gilauri, Prime Minister of Georgia, decided to promote the country’s image in China and India. Gilauri visited China and India starting October 24 to November 2, 2010 with the purpose to deepen economic ties and attract more investors to Georgia. 
During his meeting with Zhang Dejiang, Vice Premier of China, on October 26, 2010, Georgian Premier underlined that economic relations between Georgia and China are successfully developing but

there still is a big potential for further strengthening of economic ties. Chinese Vice-Premier accentuated that his government boosts Chinese companies to deepen partnership with Georgia and implement more investments, Gilauri’s press-service informed Georgian Journal.  
Gilauri proposed to foster direct air-traffic between Georgia and China that can encourage tourism development and investors’ turnover between these countries. Chinese side does not rule out to use Tbilisi International Airport as a transit unit for flights from China to Europe. 
Moreover, sides discussed the issue of construction the wholesale market of Chinese companies in Tbilisi that can provide the entire region. Partnership in energy projects was also a part of discussions between Georgian Premier and Chenese Vice-Premier.
“Actually there are several projects that can be implemented: logistics center for Chinese companies in Georgia so as to make trade between China and Europe easier and create jobs in Georgia. We talked also on enhancement of Poti Port and creation of new enterprise within the Free Industrial Zone of Poti. These enterprises are supposed to trade with Eastern European countries, Turkey and bring in Chinese investments,” Gilauri stated.
Later in Beijing Gilauri met with Chinese companies including China International Water & Electric Corporation, Free Trade Zone of Quingdao, Sino Hydro Corporation, China Railway Construction, and Gezhouba Group. Construction of Hydro Power Plants (HPP), as well as several transport infrastructure development projects as well as Georgian tourism potential activation fell under focus of these meetings.
On October 27, 2010 Gilauri met with the management team of China Development Bank and the Bank does not rule out to open its representation office in Tbilisi. Delegation of the Bank will visit Tbilisi to this end to get closer with the economic picture of Georgia. Georgian Primer also met the Chinese IT giant company Poly Group Corporation, and participated in the business forum held in Beijing. Gilauri introduced Georgian business climate to Chinese business and appealed to invest in Georgia.
Creaiton of Georgian-Chinese business council was decided that will be focused on economic issues interesting for both sides.
On October 27, 2010 Gilauri left for Shanghai to visit international exhibition World Expo where Georgia is also participating and quite popular among visitors. According to Chinese data, over 70 million people visited the exhibition and about 1.7 million entered Georgian pavilion during the last 6 months. Gilauri believes this is very important as far as the more people will get closer to Georgia the better.
“It will give an impetus to local population as well as visitors to arrive to Georgia. We focused on two key directions: wine and tourism, for China is one of the best potential markets to Georgian wine, it is one of the most increasing markets and we hope to enhance  our export to China,” Gilauri stated.
Gilauri met with the President of Shanghai stock exchange and top-officials of the telecommunication network company Huawei. He assures that there is much bigger interest in China than expected.
“Everybody has a concrete proposal here, nobody came only to listen to the information of Georgia, “Gilauri stressed adding that they have already held negotiations with enterprises interested to run business in Georgia and hundreds of millions of US dollars may be invested in Georgia as an aftermath. 
On October 30, Gilauri left for India to participate in the Invest in Georgia forum organized by Fianancial Times in Mumbai. He cut a speech on Georgian business climate with Indian businessmen and assured that all who participated in the forum had a concrete business proposal. And big enterprises are supposed to trade with our region and create jobs.
According to Aleksandre Khetaguri, Minister of energy of Georgia, who is a member of Georgian delegation making an Asian business tour, both Chinese and Indian companies expressed big interests to invest in Georgia. 
We have already signed a contract with Indian-based Trans Electrica LTD on construction of Khudoni HPP. Also Indian investments are quite significant in gas research and exploration sector. We hope to attract additional investments from this country to develop our hydropower sector that is a gurantee to Georgian economic growth actually,” Khetaguri stated.

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