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Mishiko’s “paradise apples” are rotten2010-11-16 14:48
Mikheil Saakashvili is a hot-tempered man always boiling with ideas. He shared some fresh ones with representatives of the World Bank at a meeting in Kvareli. While imperialists from the north clip the great reformer's wings, vigorous Mishiko is easily satisfied with the plan to make Caucasian region (at least) similar to Georgia. He is certain that "if Georgia did it, Caucasus will do it too".
If given green light, eccentric president of Sakartvelo could organize the whole world the way he sees it. Still, if this is forbidden, let Caucasus imitate him at least. With him as a considerate leader, as Mishiko thinks, the country is "making progress in all spheres" which is a real nightmare to Georgia's ill-wishers driven by black envy since over the years of his presidency Georgia has turned into "a successful, efficient, corruption-free state of the European type".
Existence of such a state in Caucasus region used to be impossible, - Mikheil Saakashvili told his guests from the World Bank. Now, however, there is a perfect model. If various ratings can be trusted things will continue to get better.
What kind of paradise apples is the Georgian leader preparing for those who will follow his example? As the World Bank reports, with brave Saakashvili's boasting before its representatives, the country's GDP per capita in Georgia is USD 4,700 for purchasing-power parity. It is not really much of anything to Western mega states but maybe these figures will shock Caucasus?
This index in adjacent Armenia is USD 5,420 and citizens of oil-bathed Azerbaijan earn twice more than people of the "successful and efficient state" with GDP per capita equal to USD 9,030. Thus, Georgia is closing the trio of leaders for the volume of domestic product, to put it in diplomatic terms. Maybe, Georgia can overdo its neighbors in other indexes?
For instance, according to the reports from the States (CIA this time) so adored by the Georgian president, nearly 31% of the country's population is below poverty level, i.e. one third of Sakartvelo citizens are poverty-ridden. Maybe, Langley analysts are blackening bright reality in Georgia acting on the side of the ideological opponents of the US main ally in the region... Or the situation is really so bad that even CIA could not embellish it in fear of being mocked at by the expert community.
This rate in Armenia, the main ally of "northern occupants" in Transcaucasia is 26.5%, and only 11% in satisfied Azerbaijan. So far, there aren't paradise apples in Georgian economy. "But a country's situation can't be evaluated on the basis of two criteria!" - a reader might exclaim. And this is right. Let's continue.
Current unemployment rate in Armenia is slightly above 7% of able-bodied population. In Azerbaijan it's 6%. What does Sakartvelo have in store for us here? Is there a long-awaited breakthrough? There is: Georgia wins over its neighbors with its highest unemployment rate - 16.4% of Georgia's able-bodied population fails to find jobs as reported by Tbilisi-benevolent CIA analysts. The World Bank considers Georgian unemployment 0.5% higher. It will be remembered that according to European standards Georgian authorities love to go by, unemployment rate higher than 6% is already an alarming sign.
Georgia is a loser in terms of economic growth. Against Yerevan's 6.8% and head-turning 10.8% in Baku, Tbilisi's 2% look ugly.