On July 19, the APRC’s Salome Gelashvili presented the results of the study “Competitive advantages of mountainous regions of Georgia” to representatives of both state and civil society organizations. The study was conducted in collaboration with the Georgian Institute of Public Affairs (GIPA) with financial support from theUnited Nations Development Program (UNDP), the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), and the Austrian Development Cooperation (ADC).

The goal of the research project was to support the elaboration of informed and evidence-based regional policies aimed at the development of mountainous regions of Georgia. In order to achieve this goal, the primary objective of the study was to identify gravity centers and functional regions in Georgia, as well as priority economic activities and sectors with high potential for economic growth in mountainous areas. The research team studied factors affecting the competitiveness of the prioritized sectors and developed recommendations for local and central government representatives.

On June 21 2019, ISET’s Rati Kochlamazashvili moderated the Farmers’ Congress, which took place at the Hualing Hotel in Tbilisi. The congress discussed the Challenges and Opportunities of Strengthening Market Linkages for Smallholder Farmers.

The event was organized by ‘Bridge - Innovation and Development (BRIDGE)’ and ‘International Organization People in Need (PIN)’ within the framework of the EU-funded ‘Civil Society Organizations Supporting Free Trade with European Union’ program.

The main goal of the congress was to support dialogue between farmers, state bodies and the private sector (specifically hypermarket and supermarket chains), the latter being one of the prerequisites for the development of the agricultural sector. The participants discussed the challenges farmers face in the process of selling their products on the local market. The congress also brought to attention a number of successful cases and gave a chance to smallholder farmers to establish new contacts with retailers for future collaboration.

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