Georgia, Ukraine Discuss Deepening Economic Cooperation

Georgian Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia has stated that Georgia and Ukraine can achieve more in trade, transport, development sectors and investments toward various directions.

“We stand ready to work hard every single day to make the economic cooperation between Ukraine and Georgia more fruitful for our citizens,” the PM said when meeting his Ukrainian counterpart, Oleksiy Honcharuk, in Kiyv this weekend.

Gakharia also said that the mutual cooperation, based on economy, strategic partnership and security, predominantly aims to ensure the well-being of the citizens of Georgia and Ukraine and to help both countries remain within the European space.

He also expressed gratitude to his Ukrainian colleague for the support demonstrated towards the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Georgia, in turn noting that the Government of Georgia always supports the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine, both in bilateral and multilateral formats.

During the meeting, Gakharia also underlined the most significant result coming from his official visit to Ukraine: the signing of an agreement on ‘The Establishment of a High-Level Strategic Council’ after a meeting with Volodymyr Zelensky, President of Ukraine, on December 13.

“It will become the most effective platform for our governments, ministries and institutions in various sectors of economy, security, international relations and culture to cooperate and achieve results even more effectively and efficiently,” he noted.

Moreover, the PM focused on the significance of the Euro-Atlantic integration of Georgia and Ukraine, noting that cooperation toward this end should become more effective.

“The Government of Georgia is ready to work to make sure that the strategic partnership and friendship between our two countries brings more tangible results for our citizens,” he added.

On his part, PM Honcharuk noted that Georgia is a strategic partner for Ukraine and the visit of its Prime Minister will serve as a basis for deepening and developing the bilateral relations further. According to him, Ukraine will do its best to increase the trade and flow of visitors between the two countries and to deepen and develop economic relations.

“We propose to kick off active work on the development of the freight transportation system using the direct international ferry connection between Ukraine and Georgia, as well as the liberalization of railway ferry services between the ports of Ukraine and Georgia. The project we are working on, which will be equally interesting to Georgia, is the transport corridor Baltic Sea – Black Sea – Caspian Sea. We count on Georgia’s active participation in this project,” he said.

Before meeting the PM Prime Minister, Gakharia met President Zelensky, with whom he signed an Agreement on the Establishment of the High Level Strategic Council of Georgia and Ukraine. It is aimed at covering four key directions: political, trade-economic, defense-security and cultural-humanitarian interaction. Work-groups created for each of them will be led by respective ministers, thus ensuring a comprehensive bilateral dialogue at a high level.

The leaders of both countries noted that in signing such agreements at the highest level, the countries manifest their readiness towards advancing relations.

When summing up his visit to Ukraine, Gakharia said that Ukraine is Georgia’s strategic partner and also evidence that both countries can better fight challenges together.

The PM underlined that both sides see the importance of effective cooperation and strategic partnership between Ukraine and Georgia.

“We can develop faster together towards European integration and more effectively protect our territorial integrity. This support is based on our cooperation, economy, transport corridors and trade of course,” he added.

Georgian – Ukrainian relations are based on traditional partnership and close cooperation. As Georgia’s Foreign Ministry reports, the existing legal framework consists of 105 bilateral and multilateral agreements, which practically regulates all spheres of relations between the two countries.

Ukraine is one of Georgia’s biggest and most important trade partners, seeing a free trade regime which is legally regulated in both the bilateral and multilateral formats.

An important part of cooperation is experience-sharing successfully implemented reforms. Collaboration is also actively developed in the fields of agriculture, public health, sports and youth. Direct scientific–educational ties have already been established between major universities of the two countries.

Cooperation in the field of tourism is one the main priorities of the mutual ties. Georgia is one of the most important destinations for Ukrainian tourists and that number is increasing by the year.

By Tea Mariamidze

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