BRITISH-GEORGIAN TIES
04 July, 2013
BRITISH-GEORGIAN TIES
Interview with Ambassador David Moran shortly before his departure from Georgia

David Moran arrived in Tbilisi in January, 2013 to assume the role of Charge d’Affaires. Georgian Journal is grateful to him for accepting our offer, which turned out to be our mutual wish. He gave us an interview to sum up his 6-months stay here, just before he left Georgia.
The Ambassador represents Her Majesty the Queen and the UK government in the country to which he is appointed.
He is responsible for the work of the Embassy and its Consulate, including political work, trade and investment, press and cultural relations, and visa and consular services.
G.J: Why are you leaving so soon?
D.M: It’s an exceptional case. My predecessor left early to go on maternity leave and I came to bridge the time between two full-time ambassadors.
G.J: How would you sum up these six months spent in our country?
D. M: It has been a very pleasant experience to live in Georgia. Of course, it would be better to stay for three years, but six months is enough to get to know and like your country. It has given me a taste and desire to come back. It has also been stimulating to be a part of this very interesting time in Georgia’s political development, working with Georgian government officials, NGOs, and journalists. If your assignment lasts only for six months, you have to decide what to do in that time and what your priorities should be. I am pleased that we were able to make progress in a number of things, including promoting British-Georgian trade links and bilateral political relations. For example, there have been several visits by ministers and senior officials. David Usupashvili was in London recently for talks with Lord Wallace. We have also established a British Business Group in Tbilisi, which will help us boost trade between our two countries. I often say that our trade is at a lower level than it should be. There is plenty of potential to do more. Therefore, creation of this business group is one of the means of pushing the trade forward. I delivered several speeches in Britain in front of business people, who are potentially interested in the Georgian market, and we have hosted trade missions. Hopefully, all this means that this year, the trade figures will be much higher than last year.
G.J: Please, tell our reader briefly about your professional background.
D.M: I joined the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in 1985 and have served as British Ambassador to Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan. I have also been posted to Nairobi, Moscow and Paris. My next posting will be as British Ambassador to Switzerland and Liechtenstein.
G.J: What are the priorities of the embassy and will they change after your mission is over?
D.M: Our priorities are consistent. We support Georgia’s Euro-Atlantic orientation and your ambitions to get closer to Europe. It will not change. It was the same before I came and it will be the same after I leave. We will also continue to support conflict resolution activities. I have already mentioned trade. The British Council also does important cultural and educational work. The embassy has several teams which do important work in these areas, and for me it was particularly satisfying to work so closely with Georgian ministers on encouraging political cohabitation during the transition time in your country.
G.J: Could you compare the cohabitation in Georgia and other countries, which have undergone it?
D.M: I was in charge of relations with France when they had a cohabitation of this kind – the country had the President from one party and the Prime Minister from another. I am sure that our French friends will tell you that this process is never easy, but I think that the French example and the Georgian example show that it is possible to have different political traditions and still find the common ground, which you need to work peacefully and positively together. Thus, that’s up to Georgians.
If the trend of working together constructively continues and grows, you will have every chance of success.
G.J: Why was this year’s Queen’s Birthday party full of pomp and circumstance?
D.M: It was designed to celebrate different aspects of Britain. You saw the traditional aspect like the Loyalty Toast to the Queen which happens at every Queen’s Birthday Party, and the Royal Marine Band, which we managed to get here for this occasion. They perform around the world and I genuinely enjoyed having them in Georgia. But we also wanted to showcase contemporary Britain. So, the event focused on creativity, on showing Britain today, which combines traditions with something more modern. For example, we played some of our contemporary music at the evening. We also had three Minis on the street outside the hotel to showcase famous British products - in this case iconic cars - which are up-to-date, very attractive and part of the 21st century Britain.
G.J: What is your impression of Georgian media?
D.M: It is very lively and I welcome that. There are number of ways in which a country promotes its democratic culture. Independent judiciary and protection of basic freedoms and rights of individuals is essential. But the media is a key factor as well. Journalists play an absolutely pivotal role in reporting events and holding both government officials and bureaucrats to account. I support their sustained independence!
G.J: Your Prime Minister David Cameron said in January of 2013 that he is ready to hold referendum on the membership of the EU if the Conservative Party comes to power in the next general elections in Great Britain. There have been many debates regarding the membership in EU’s precursor European Economic Community as well. How would you comment it?
D.M: There are lively debates about Europe in Britain - as in many European countries. That’s good because the European Union needs to be democratically accountable to the citizens in all its 27 member states. The British Government is in favor of continued membership – it is in our national interest. The principles underlying EU reform should include flexibility and competitiveness to ensure that European Common Market is better equipped to meet the economic and other challenges that we face. We will continue to work with our European partners to develop the European Union in ways which reflect the interests and ambitions of all its members.
G.J: You are a professional blues pianist. Should our reader expect something from you at your farewell party?
D.M: You never know – my Georgian friends have been kind enough to listen to me on several occasions! I have even had the good fortune to sing together with the Brazilian Ambassador in Tbilisi once or twice. He is a very talented musician. One of Georgia’s many pleasures is its people, who love music. When I attended recent concert of traditional Georgian music, I was amazed by the variety of musical traditions in different regions. I am still learning more about that. I truly liked it. I have also heard some good modern musicians who combine traditional musical technique with up-to-date technology, producing a very interesting mix. Georgian music, along with all other local pleasures – food, wine, scenery, people – make it difficult for me to leave!
G.J: I hope you will come back, at least as a tourist.
D.M: Well, there are many ways I can come back; for work or for pleasure. Potentially, I can even come back as an ambassador for full three years at some time in the future, but it depends on my government.
Georgian Journal would like to thank British Ambassador Mr. Moran and his spouse Mrs. Carol Marquis for the wonderful Queen’s Birthday Party, as well as for the warm reception at the embassy; it wishes him all the best in his career and personal life and hopes that the links that have been established between us will develop and deepen during the mission of Mr. Moran’s successors.
Print
Other Stories
International observers about the presidential election in Georgia
The presidential election took place on the 28th of October in Georgia.
First Ladies of Independent Georgia
The presidential election took place on the 28th of October in Georgia. It was the last election in which the president will be selected by popular vote.
Funny incidents on Election Day in Georgia
The presidential election took place on the 28th of October in Georgia.
Deadline for the second round of presidential elections in Georgia is December 2
Presidential elections were held on the 28th of October in Georgia. None of the candidates managed to get majority of votes, so the second round of elections is to be appointed.
The USA National Security Advisor John Bolton is in Georgia
National Security Advisor of the United States John Bolton visited Georgia today.
People are detained at the Cannabis Festival
Today, Georgian political movement Girchi holds an event in the Dedaena Park called the Cannabis Festival.
Top safest countries and Georgia is among them - new survey says
Georgia is among the safest countries in the world. This fact is substantiated by various surveys and researches.
Who is interested in the cultivation of cannabis in Georgia?
Several weeks ago the government announced about its initiative to legalize the cultivation of medical marijuana in Georgia.
Fight in Gori – head of administration uses a bin full of manure
There was an incident yesterday in Gori municipality, Georgia at the entrance of the municipality building.
2 Georgian detainees freed from the Tskhinvali prison
Georgian detainees Maia Otinashvili and Akaki Dotiashvili are freed from the Tskhinvali prison. They had been accused of illegally crossing a so-called the borderline into the occupied Tskhinvali region.
Georgia might provide Far East countries with armored vehicles
LEPL State Military Scientific-Technical Center "Delta" might provide several Far East countries with armored vehicles, - “Delta” has informed InterPressNews about it.
Who can be the next first lady of Georgia?
On the 28th of October, presidential elections will be held in Georgia. The last elections in October 2013 resulted in a victory for Giorgi Margvelashvili, a candidate of the Georgian Dream (the ruling party).
Another Georgian kidnapped at the occupational line, stays detained
Maia Otinashvili (a mother of three children) was detained in her own garden on the 19th of September. Eyewitnesses claim that she was kidnapped by armed people with masks.
Fight broke out in the Georgian TV show
Fight in the Georgian Show Archevani (a choice) broke out between the guests yesterday.
7 amendments that come in force today in Georgia
On the 1st of October, 7 new amendments come in force in Georgia.
Speaker of the parliament plays Knockin' on Heaven's Door
What do the politicians do when they have free time? It is an interesting issue in every country.
What are the new New Year decorations for Tbilisi
New Year decorations and its price in Tbilisi is always a matter of discussion in the capital.
Mamuka Bakhtadze gives a speech at the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly
Mamuka Bakhtadze, the prime minister of Georgia is attending the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly from the 24th of September.
Georgia will ban use, import and production of plastic bags
The Georgian government has decided to tighten rules regulating use of plastic bags in Georgia.
The parliament returns to Tbilisi
The Parliament of Georgia will continue working in Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia from January 2019. Currently, the building is located in Kutaisi (west Georgia).
Mamuka Bakhtadze is visiting the USA within the working visit
The Georgian PM Mamuka Bakhtadze Brought a wreath to the tomb of the Georgian military serviceman John Malkhaz Shalikashvili.
Use of plastic bags to be reduced from the 1st of October
Within the framework of the Green Economics and Environmental Protection Policy the Georgian government has approved new regulations
Four Russian Journalists have not been allowed to enter Georgia
Three members of the Russian delegation were not allowed to enter Georgia as this would have violated the Law on the Occupied Territories of Georgia.
Tbilisi sign may appear on the Funicular hill
Hollywood has become a source of inspiration for many people worldwide. A similar idea from a Tbilisi citizen sounds very clever and attractive.
Russia was at an undeclared war with Georgia for years - Matthew Bryza
I think anybody who has observed how Russia has been conducting its war in Ukraine should realize that Russia was at war with Georgia, an undeclared war for years,
PHOTO OF THE DAY
Exchange Rates
GEL Exchange Rate
Convertor
13.11.2018
14.11.2018
USD
1
USD
2.7166
2.7166
EUR
1
EUR
3.0602
3.0602
GBP
1
GBP
3.4900
3.4900
RUB
100
RUB
4.0131
4.0131
Other Stories
On 26 May, Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, joined celebrations in the Georgian capital of Tbilisi
Violation of Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity by Assad regime has been strictly criticized
Exactly one year ago, Georgia was granted visa-free travel with the European Union.
Georgia’s ex-president president Mikheil Saakashvili's supporters managed to free detained Mikheil Saakashvili in the center of Kiev.
The US Ambassador to Georgia Ian Kelly congratulates Georgia on Independence Day.
The regulations on the introduction of visa-free travel for citizens of Georgia have been officially signed in Brussels.
The entire Georgia is involved in Secret Santa game, which means that people are sending gifts to each other secretly
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia is taking part in NATO Ministerial underway in Brussels, Belgium.
A special squad has been mobilized at the 48th polling station in Marneuli, Kvemo Kartli region.
Two politicians in Georgia have come to blows during a live TV debate ahead of the country’s parliamentary elections, Euronews reports.
GEL Exchange
USD
1
USD
2.7166
EUR
1
EUR
3.0602
GBP
1
GBP
3.4900
RUB
100
RUB
4.0131
November 2018
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29 30