High-security Lasika08.12.2011 | 17:49
Authorities of Sakartvelo are definitely in panic. Usual delirium Saakashvili, which has been befuddling people for many years, has finally gone out, mostly because of the emergence of an adequate alternative in face of Bidzina Ivanishvili. Desperately clinging to power, the president is ready to bet on frankly fantastic projects. Therefore, in a poor country suffering serious population decline, they decided to build a new city - Lasika. GeorgiaTimes' correspondent discussed the outcome of this idea with economist Giorgi Khukhashvili.
The authorities expect that the new city of Lasika, which is planned to be built between Poti and Anaklia, will be populated by rural residents and the citizens who returned to Georgia. Thus, the locality, existing only in the imagination of the president, will become the second largest city of Georgia - after the capital. The money for its construction will be funded from the state budget and by attracting private investment.
"The name "Lasika" is not accidental; it is based on historical fact. It will be a new trade-economic and commercial center not only in western Georgia, but throughout the country. This will be a modern city, which is already being designed. This is a ten-year plan. We have no illusions that the city will be built in one day or one year. Major infrastructure works will be carried out in 2012-2013 and in 2015 the authorities want the part of the city to be built", the spokesperson of the president Manana Manjgaladze said without a pause.
This plan seems so nice and efficient in the words of the authorities. But the opposition has long been understood that Saakashvili and his minions' words and deeds are at variance. "After a huge bike and eggs we were not surprised by the new project. They continue to spend billions for new president's fantasy. Mikhail Saakashvili and the government turned into Baron Munchausen, who managed to get out of the swamp, where he fell with his horse, pulling himself by his hair. But the president's fantasies won't be able to pull the country out of the swamp. He should have spent these millions for vulnerable people. You have an answer to the question of where you push Georgia, but I can say - to the social collapse", thus the representative of the faction "Unity for Justice" Jondi Baghaturia commented the grandiose plans of the authorities.
The initiative of Saakashvili, at all its ambition, could become a kind of Georgian analogue of what was happening in the Soviet Union under another native of Sakartvelo - Joseph Stalin, by the orders of which the cities arose. To understand such polarity of the assessments of the project of Lasika by the authorities and the opposition, GeorgiaTimes' correspondent enlisted the assistance of an expert on economic issues Giorgi Khukhashvili. According to him, Saakashvili does not infringe on the laurels of the Soviet dictator - his aspirations are much higher.
"It's very similar to our mythological story, when our famous kings said: "Let there be a town here". We have heard something like that, but this is pure propaganda, because there's nothing real and functional behind this idea", said the economist. "This idea is too unripe to discuss it seriously. As we know from history, the cities arise naturally and around some ideas. The city should perform a specific function. They told us nothing about that. We were told about the subjective desire to build a city. Moreover, the authorities also do not know anything about that. Only sole man knows it, it is his personal whim, and now Saakashvili's surroundings will try to ground it. It often happens like this: at first - a craziest personal initiative, and then all the king's men are trying to somehow gather it".
In this case, there is what to gather, because there are much more questions to the Town Planning project of the president than answers. Giorgi Khukhashvili started with the fact that the principle of choosing the name "Lasika" is totally incomprehensible. And who took this decision is also unknown. "What is this project for? Why there? Why the people will go there? From where will they come? Why the people from other cities will move there? If they will come from the villages, then no one will stay in rural areas. Now, there live not more than a half million people, and a new city requires this number of people. There is no real economy, where they could be employed. This is pure nonsense", outraged our interlocutor.
But Saakashvili knows all this better than anyone else. After all, he has real information about the state of Georgia's economy, in contrast to information published by Gruzstat for general use. Then, what motivates the president, alienated from reality?