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Mamradze: Georgian authorities may usurp business2013-04-17 13:02
Does the new leadership of Georgia intend to appropriate the private sector? According to experts, such a danger exists. The media often report about the secret meetings of public and private actors. Will Ivanishvili fulfill the promise to release Georgian business from the government control? Or he will succumb to temptation and continue the tradition of the former authorities of the country?
Business in Georgia is becoming freer, but it is still very early for the total freedom. Despite the fact that the Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili has declared the exemption of business sector from the pressure of the government a priority of the new government, the media constantly report about "some contacts" between the businessmen and representatives of the government and Parliament, as well as those close to power structures. The aim of these contacts can be only one - the redistribution of business in Georgia. Or an attempt of such reredistribution.
One of the first who raised the noise was a representative of the parliamentary minority Zurab Japaridze. According to him, an economist and an associate of the Prime Minister Gia Khukhashvili for some reason invites the businessmen at a meeting in the building, which, by the way, was earlier owned by the former Minister of Defense David Kezerashvili. Details of meetings, of course, unknown, but the opposition immediately started suspecting that the government is going "to deal" with business people, that is to reallocate shares in a particular business. "Maybe someone will explain the purpose for which Khukhashvili is meeting with businessmen and which role is conferred on him by the new government of Georgia?" Japaridze said at the plenary session of the Parliament.
Khukhashvili does not deny such meetings. According to him, he spoke with the entrepreneurs about freedom of business, as well as about the opportunity of Georgian businessmen to conduct affairs without any interference from the state. But the Prime Minister himself said the same thing. So why they need further confirmation?
After coming to power, the Prime Minister said he would not allow any relations between the business and government. "If you are trying to fraternize with the businessmen, then I won't allow that," Ivanishvili said addressing to members of his coalition.
Georgian media has recently reported that a few days ago, Prime Minister Ivanishvili held a closed meeting with representatives of the parliamentary majority and the minority and categorically demanded the lawmakers to stop the process of redistribution of business. The Premiere has allegedly heard some speculation that this process involved members of Parliament. Formal structures have not confirmed this information. But Georgian experts also have information about such a meeting.
- Yes, I've heard of such a meeting, said economic expert Alexander Tvalchrelidze in an interview to GeorgiaTimes. If Ivanishvili demands, then there are certain problems. Well, the world is full of people who love money, including in Georgia. Free business in Georgia is only being formed, it's not fully free. There are some attempts by some individuals to control a particular business. However, the situation is improving with each passing month.
But for the restoration of justice they should return the businesses to the former owners, and this process is very slow. Prosecutor's Office of Georgia has received more than 7,000 applications from businessmen, but so far they have made only a few specific solutions. We'll see the real results in the fall, and then in Georgia there may appear specific investments.