New Chairman of the EUGBC Board and EUGBC Secretary General met with the Head of EU Delegation to Georgia Ambassador and Head of Division for EaP countries at the EEAS

On 26th of June 2012, EUGBC Core Member, Emmanuel Haton and EUGBC Secretary General, Konstantin Zaldastanishvili held a meeting with the Head of EU Delegation to Georgia, Ambassador Phillip Dimitrov and Head of Division for Eastern Partnership countries at the European External Action Service, John Kjaer. Meeting took place at the EU Delegation to Georgia.

Konstantin Zaldastanishvili introduced to the EU officials Emmanuel Haton, who has recently taken up a position of Director ofEuropean Government Affairs at BP in Brussels and also committed himself to EUGBC to be elected as Chairman of the Board. The Secretary General also informed the meeting participants about EUGBC activities facilitating development of trade and economic relations between the EU and Georgia.

The parties to the meeting discussed the current state of the EU-Georgia relations. It was stressed that the negotiations on Association Agreement (AA) is going rather smoothly. The government of Georgia in dialogue with the EU counterparts is proceeding with necessary regulatory reforms. In parallel of the AA, negotiations are also going on concluding the Deep and ComprehensiveFree Trade Area (DCFTA) with Georgia. It was underlined that the latter is a particularly challenging process considering the scale of the legislative and institutional reforms in the country and a high compliance cost associated with this process.         

However, the parties to the meeting highlighted that DCFTA is absolutely essential in order to diversify export markets for Georgian products, particularly in the background of Russian embargo. If fully implemented this agreement widely opens up the EU market – one of the large, stable and predictable market to the Georgian exports. In perspective, this will inevitably have a positive impact on the development of local businesses and respectively on the Georgia’s economic performance overall.

The Secretary General informed the EU representatives that in order to contribute to the important process of DCFTA negotiations and provide business input into the political dialogue, EUGBC has initiated a business driven Working Group. Besides, the Council actively works on several projects aiming at reaching out and informing Georgian entrepreneurs and potential exporters on the trade standards and requirements of the EU.