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Abkhazia admitted by international business community. Tbilisi is opposed to it2009-09-16 13:05
The relationship between Tbilisi and Sukhum can be characterized as "sitting on a volcano". Every new week brings more reasons for mutual accusations. Now Tbilisi is indignant about Abkhazia having entered in the International Chamber of Commerce. Just a few days ago, the Georgian government announced a new strategy aimed at rebuilding relationship with Abkhazia and South Ossetia and even suggested opening a new Tbilisi-Sukhum bus route. The GeorgiaTimes correspondent tried to analyze the situation while talking to CCIA president Gennadiy Gagulia.
Sukhum has confirmed that Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Abkhazia (CCIA) recently joined International Chamber of Commerce (ICC). The GeorgiaTimes correspondent is talking to president of Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Abkhazia Gennadiy Gagulia:
- Does the membership of Abkhazia in ICC mean the recognition of Abkhazia by the international business community?
- Basically, a public organization does not play any role in recognizing nationality, - said our interlocutor. - However, the fact that International Chamber of Commerce invited us to join it can be estimated as a tribute to European democracy. One should understand the tasks and objectives of public organizations that should play an important role in democratization, for one of the principles of democracy is that the public organizations should participate in the international processes regardless of any political lines. It is in this aspect that Abkhazia has risen to higher level.
- How long did the negotiations last?
- About three months. No one tried to press upon or convince anyone in these negotiations. Rather, it was a technical routine. ICC made a decision and we were told we could fill in the forms.
- What are the preferences of CCIA's joining an international structure?
- We are going to participate in all business meetings, round tables; we will represent our republic and meet businessmen. We will be soon identified, which is very important for our country that has recently gained independence. After the recognition, there came an active flow of investors including the European ones. Regrettably, many of them were scared by the crisis. However, one can see some glimpses today: they say, perhaps we will come, perhaps we will invest. There is no money so far; still, the well-developed countries cannot boast of attracting any investments either. It is very important for us that we are entering into cooperation with business structures at an international level.
- Well, Tbilisi reacted rather badly to this piece of news...
- To my mind, Tbilisian politicians have got a kind of disease, for they take everything badly and with much criticism. However, it is not a secret that not so long ago, there was only 52 countries in the world that were recognized as independent, while now there are about 155 independent states. Nothing bad has happened to the world; this is reality, new territories appear. Let us take Czechoslovakia. Two republics separated from each other peacefully and live well side by side. As to Tbilisi, they cannot even imagine that it is possible to come apart without a scandal, war or getting into any arguments. They think that if something belonged to them some time ago it will belong to them forever. Due to some circumstances we became part of the Georgian SSR. Then we separated by force of the well-known circumstances. If Tbilisi does not stop rattling the saber and turning furious at our smallest success there is no chance for us to build any partnership relations, - Gennadiy Gagulia summed up.