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Ambassador Carl Hartzell highlights EU support in Dedoplistskaro municipality

During his two-day visit to Kakheti, Carl Hartzell, Ambassador of the European Union to Georgia, spent time in Dedoplistskaro municipality. The programme included a joint announcement of the nomination of the Dedoplistskaro Biosphere Reserve with the Minister of Environmental Protection and Agriculture Otar Shamugia. Ambassador Hartzell also spoke to members of the Local Action Group Dedoplistskaro and visited several project sites of EU support to local businesses and entrepreneurs.

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Ambassador Hartzell started the day together with Minister Shamugia in the Dedoplistskaro Biosphere Reserve to announce the submission of nomination papers to UNESCO. Together with REC Caucasus the municipality has worked on establishing the Biosphere Reserve as a model for inclusive and sustainable growth. The nomination of the Biosphere Reserve as well as efforts to develop businesses around the project will help improve living conditions and quality of life of the local community. A clean and diverse environment combined with local production will hopefully help the municipality and its citizens prosper.

Whilst in Dedoplistskaro, the Ambassador met with the Local Action Group (LAG). The LAG brings together representatives of local public and private sectors, as well as local communities who wish to contribute to the socio-economic development of the community. The activities of the LAG are founded on a European rural development model, the so called LEADER approach, and aim to help local economic diversification and overall economic development of Dedoplistskaro. The LAG has so far supported over 100 local development initiatives and created hundreds of jobs. Ambassador Hartzell visited several of these local initiatives:

“Nasrashvili Winery” received a small EU grant through the Local Action Group to refurbish its production facilities, which has helped the family-run business enter the EU market selling wine in six countries. They plan to continue expanding and increase their exports to other countries.

Ambassador Hartzell stopped by the Hotel “Autograph”, which has received funding for the reconstruction works of the historical building. It has 14 rooms available for guests. The upgrade of the hotel has created 6 new jobs locally.

The last stop took place at art studio “Pesvebi” (Roots) supported by the EU through the Local Action Group Dedoplistskaro. Pesvebi is a unique workshop in Georgia that has considerable experience using natural dyes producing unique products distinguished by the density of color and decorative composition.

Across the two-day mission, the Ambassador visited projects related to regional development seeing refurbished touristic sites and meeting businesses, farmers and exporters who have benefitted from EU support to further develop their businesses.

For further information, please contact:

ევროკავშირის ელჩი დედოფლისწყაროს ბიოსფეროს რეზერვატს ესტუმრა/EU Ambassador at Dedoplistskaro Biosphere Reserve
ევროკავშირის ელჩი დედოფლისწყაროს ბიოსფეროს რეზერვატს ესტუმრა/EU Ambassador at Dedoplistskaro Biosphere Reserve
EU Ambassador at hotel Autograph/ ევროკავშირის ელჩი სასტუმრო "ავტოგრაფს" ესტუმრა
EU Ambassador at Nasrashvili Winery/ ევროკავშირის ელჩი "ნასრაშვილის მეღვინეობას ესტუმრა
ევროკავშირის ელჩი დედოფლისწყაროს ბიოსფეროს რეზერვატს ესტუმრა/EU Ambassador at Dedoplistskaro Biosphere Reserve
ევროკავშირის ელჩი დედოფლისწყაროს ბიოსფეროს რეზერვატს ესტუმრა/EU Ambassador at Dedoplistskaro Biosphere Reserve
EU Ambassador at hotel Autograph/ ევროკავშირის ელჩი სასტუმრო "ავტოგრაფს" ესტუმრა
EU Ambassador at Nasrashvili Winery/ ევროკავშირის ელჩი "ნასრაშვილის მეღვინეობას ესტუმრა
ევროკავშირის ელჩი დედოფლისწყაროს ბიოსფეროს რეზერვატს ესტუმრა/EU Ambassador at Dedoplistskaro Biosphere Reserve
ევროკავშირის ელჩი დედოფლისწყაროს ბიოსფეროს რეზერვატს ესტუმრა/EU Ambassador at Dedoplistskaro Biosphere Reserve
EU Ambassador at hotel Autograph/ ევროკავშირის ელჩი სასტუმრო "ავტოგრაფს" ესტუმრა
EU Ambassador at Nasrashvili Winery/ ევროკავშირის ელჩი "ნასრაშვილის მეღვინეობას ესტუმრა
ევროკავშირის ელჩი დედოფლისწყაროს ბიოსფეროს რეზერვატს ესტუმრა/EU Ambassador at Dedoplistskaro Biosphere Reserve
EU Ambassador at hotel Autograph/ ევროკავშირის ელჩი სასტუმრო "ავტოგრაფს" ესტუმრა
EU Ambassador at hotel Autograph/ ევროკავშირის ელჩი სასტუმრო "ავტოგრაფს" ესტუმრა
EU Ambassador at Nasrashvili Winery/ ევროკავშირის ელჩი "ნასრაშვილის მეღვინეობას ესტუმრა

Ambassador Carl Hartzell highlights regional development projects in Kakheti

On 21-22 February, Carl Hartzell, Ambassador of the European Union to Georgia will be in Kakheti to visit several EU-funded projects. During his two-day mission, the Ambassador will travel to the municipalities of Sagarejo, Sighnaghi, Gurjaani and Dedoplistskaro.

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On 21 February, 2022 Carl Hartzell, Ambassador of the European Union to Georgia, and Mzia Giorgobiani, Deputy Minister of Regional Development and Infrastructure of Georgia visited Kakheti to see several projects within the joint regional development programme (PIRDP). Several reconstruction works and new initiatives were visited, which are being implemented within the programme to improve economic, social, cultural and environmental wellbeing of the region.

Ambassador Hartzell and Deputy Minister Giorgobani visited project sites in the municipality of Sagarejo, Gurjaani and Sighnaghi, also met with representatives of small businesses, farmers and exporters. Speaking at Gurjaani TechnoPark, the Ambassador highlighted the importance of integrated regional development approach focusing on sustainable development in Kakheti and the three other focal regions within the programme.

During the visit, Ambassador Hartzell and Deputy Minister Giorgobiani visited Manavi Fortress in Sagarejo municipality. Thanks to its historical importance, Manavi Fortress has touristic potential. The newly renovated road has made the fortress and surrounding areas more easily accessible for local and international tourists. This creates new opportunities for around 70 small businesses operating in the area, selling traditional Georgian food and wine.

Another stop took place at the cultural and recreational park in Tsnori, Sighnaghi municipality. Once construction works are completed, local residents will have a new and modern recreational area with over a hectare of space for children and cultural activities, an amphitheatre, a fountain and decorative lights to make use of. The project will also create additional opportunities for the development of local business.

As part of the joint regional development programme between the Government and the EU, a road connecting the two villages Chumlaki to Bakurtsikhe is under construction. This new road will shorten travel time, improve access to the Tbilisi market for the surrounding areas, optimising costs for local businesses and residents. After visiting the road construction works, Ambassador Hartzell met with fruit producers from Chumlaki village to hear about their perspective and to discuss the export potential of Georgian products as well as opportunities offered by the DCFTA.

At the end of the day, Ambassador Hartzell,  Deputy Minister Giorgobani and Kakheti Governor Irakli Shioshvili presented new opportunities for businesses in Kakheti within the EU’s and the Government’s joint regional development programme (PIRDP). Three separate grant programmes are now available through the Rural Development Agency, GITA, and Enterprise Georgia.

About Pilot Integrated Regional Development Programme (PIRDP)

The Pilot Integrated Regional Development Programme (PIRDP) for Georgia 2020-2022 is a government programme based on EU regional development policy. It aims to create a favourable environment for promoting balanced and sustainable socio-economic development through integrated territorial development initiatives in four pilot regions of Kakheti, Imereti, Guria and Racha-Lechkhumi-Kvemo Svaneti.  PIRDP has a budget of 220 million GEL, of which 186 million GEL will be provided by the EU.

The programme is implemented by the Ministry of Regional Development and Infrastructure of Georgia (MRDI). The first set of grants with a total financial envelope 5 million GEL were awarded to 11 projects in Vani, Sachkhere, Tkibuli, Samtredia, Baghdati, Tsageri, Sagarejo, Telavi, Akhmeta, Ozurgeti and Chokhatauri municipalities in July 2020. In 2021, 64 projects worth GEL 61 million have already been funded, and in 2022, projects worth more than GEL 100 million are planned to be funded. In addition, grants worth GEL 40 million are aimed to support micro, small and medium enterprises, as well as innovations.

PIRDP is based on bottom-up and decentralised approach. The relevant municipal council must approve the project ideas developed by the municipality before it is submitted to the regional administration. The funding allows winning municipalities to realise important projects covering support to SMEs, improvement of key infrastructure and municipal services, improvement of human capital, education and research institutions, increase the quality and effectiveness of institutions, etc. These initiatives, in line with ongoing sectoral EU-funded programmes and projects, will boost investment and employment in targeted regions.

Regional development in Georgia is an important policy area of the EU-Georgia cooperation under the Association Agreement. The Pilot Integrated Regional Development Programme 2020-2022, co-financed through the budget support scheme by the EU, was approved by the Government in December 2019.

For further information please contact:

Manavi Fortress
Manavi Fortress
cultural and recreational park in Tsnori
cultural and recreational park in Tsnori
Manavi Fortress
cultural and recreational park in Tsnori
cultural and recreational park in Tsnori
cultural and recreational park in Tsnori
Manavi Fortress
cultural and recreational park in Tsnori
cultural and recreational park in Tsnori
cultural and recreational park in Tsnori

Ambassador Carl Hartzell to visit regional development projects in Kakheti together with Deputy Minister Mzia Giorgobani

On 21-22 February, Carl Hartzell, Ambassador of the European Union to Georgia will be in Kakheti to visit several EU-funded projects. During his two-day mission, the Ambassador will travel to the municipalities of Sagarejo, Sighnaghi, Gurjaani and Dedoplistskaro.

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On 21 February, Ambassador Hartzell together with Ms. Mzia Giorgobani, Deputy Minister of Regional Development and Infrastructure of Georgia, will visit projects sites of the GEL 220 million Pilot Integrated Regional Development Programme (PIRDP), of which GEL 186 million comes from EU funding. They will meet representatives of small businesses, farmers and exporters, as well as visit local enterprises. At the end of the day, the Ambassador and the Deputy Minister will be available at Gurjaani TechnoPark to speak about new opportunities for businesses.

Press are invited to the following locations:

Time: 16:00-17:00, Press are expected from 15:45
Location:  Gurjaani TechnoPark. 63, Kostava street, Gurjaani

On 22 February, Ambassador Hartzell will continue his visit in Dedoplistskaro municipality. 

For further information, please contact:

  • Keti Dolidze, Head of Public Relations, Ministry of Regional Development and Infrastructure, dolidzekatie@gmail.com, 577 467117

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