On the other day I spent interesting afternoon walking around one of Tbilisi's neighbourhoods - Saburtalo. Made a ton of instagrams, visited local shopping chain Goodwill, tasted sushi and other different activities.
On days like that - is great opportunity to observe what is happening around in city and in country. You might ask how? Well, it's easy with your eyes. I usually prefer free business newspapers available in different city's place. So it got my free newspapers at Saburtalo Goodwills shopping centre.
Georgian Press Review
First SPAR supermarket to open in Georgia - interesting article about Dutches owned supermarkets store, soon will be available in Georgia - it seems that SPAR will acquire two other local Georgian supermarket stores - IOLI and Foodmart. I have no idea what is Foodmart, but IOLI is small chain with few store across the city.
I guess after entrance in Georgian shopping market - SPAR will aim to get 1st place. On the other hand there are already French Carefour store and the local Goodwill store. Tough competition? Tough competition means lower prices - usually... Anyway - my predictions - after 5-10 years Georgia will be just another shopping mall culture country. Is it bad or Good?
It depends - my only argument against - many (if not all) small store owners will go bankrupt. On the other hand - it not serious that every second person in city is owner of small food store.
I will say this - Georgia is transforming to the better side, of course there will be side effects a well. But overall - article about SPAR's entrance into Georgian market leaves me thing that life goes up!
Wine making waste could become fuel starter in Georgia - article on Business week. According to this article Sweden's Scania is developing a new business direction - clean fuel production. It's awaited that Scania will opens it sales and service centre in Georgia soon. Again - I have no idea how sales and service center is related to fuel production - I guess it's just a PR move from side of SCANIA to sell their trucks in Georgia, but according to the minister of Economy and Sustainable Development, George Kvirikashvili - technology of fuel from organic waste decreases carbon dioxide emissions by 90%.
Again as I already said - looks just as a PR move from SCANIA, because I doubt that Georgia's monopolist SOCCAR will allow some swedes to produce fuel here. Anyway - at least some hi-tech news here in Georgia.
Georgia and EU sign association and free trade agreements - long and ambitious article on Business Week (cover story) - how Georgia could benefit. In overall I support Georgia's move toward EU, but I stay rather low in Georgia - Russia relations. You migh like to read my own thought regarding to Georgian EU AA deal.
Although here is a quick idea - which is still formulating in my head - Actually Russia is interested in closer Georgia - EU relations. What made me to think this? Well - Georgia has improved it's Trade Balance with Russia in last months drastic:
Georgian exports to CIS member states in January-May 2014 stood at $ 627.6 million of which Azerbaijan, Armenia and Russia were Georgia's largest export markets.
Although Georgian exports to EU stood at $253 million the same time period.
And so - taking in consideration notes coming from Russian Foreign policy makers - Russia could protect its market, by putting higher custom tolls to those countries seeking closer ties with EU, the word "could" - makes me think, that regarding to Georgia - Russia will not impose such protective steps. Instead Georgia might become a transit corridor for Russian goods to EU.
There is a proverb in Russian - "Кавказ дело тонкое" - literally meaning - "Caucasus is a slippery thing"
Anyway - seems for now Georgian policy makers know what they are doing - and Georgia will benefit both from EU and Russia.