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People need time, not slogans2009-11-30 14:52
The experts seemed to be wrong when saying that the Georgian people were tired of the protest actions. Although the autumn events were not attended by a great number of people they were held rather often. Besides, the focus was shifted from political demands to the economical ones. At last, the opposition started offering social and economical programs. Nino Burdzhanadze, head of Democratic Movement - United Georgia has presented her economy saving plan, which was described to GeorgiaTimes by expert Tejmuraz Murgulia.
Last week, the square near the Georgian parliament was overcrowded. The protest action had significant grounds: the anniversary of Rose Revolution, which outcome was critically analyzed by the opposition.
Mayor's Office prohibited any non-governmental events on November 23; however, young people from the November 7 Movement were only encouraged by the authorities' apprehensions. They came out into Rustaveli Avenue and were arrested by police. Now they will have to pay significant fines.
The arrest of the young oppositionists triggered another meeting held by their supporters and human rights defenders near the parliament building. The meeting gradually turned into another protest action with economical demands raised by the People's Party.
The protest action has been prepared since October by leader of the People's Party Koba Davitashvili after the tax inspectors arranged a sweep of minor businessmen to make them install cash registers. The People's Party demands mitigation of the tax burden imposed upon small business. It suggests that the problem of their revenue accounting should be settled by introducing a flat-sum tax.
Davitashvili is also calling upon the government to reduce the retirement age to 55 years for women and 60 years for men. Before Rose Revolution, the people of the country used to retire at this age but Mikhail Saakashvili's government decided to make them work another 5 years. It was the way to reduce the budget load, for the number of retirees became lower in the country. Still, there was no increase of the working population, for there was simultaneous mass staff reduction among the officials and smashup of business.
The draft law developed by Davitashvili's supporters implies the payment of pensions depending on the length of service and a 1-lari markup per each year of service. As was reported earlier by GeorgiaTimes, the Laborites are also opposed to the abandonment of work record books and long service bonus.
As to small and medium business, it is not only suffering from pressure on the part of tax authorities but from strain on liquidity as well. The point is that the banks that received the lion's share of the West's donor assistance have spent free means on purchasing treasury obligations. By means of these obligations, the country managed to overcome the budget deficit and started developing infrastructure. Still, even without them, the few businessmen failed to support their production by using cash flow from Europe.
Nino Burdzhanadze is worried because of the absence of support from businessmen, which affected the party's economical program presented recently at the Courtyard Marriott Hotel.
As was stated by leader of Democratic Movement - United Georgia, the economy of Georgia needs to be saved. "We have got negative indicators in many aspects. Perhaps, the country's economy is going to slightly grow in several years but we will be falling behind the rest of the countries and the world economy by then", - she said.