Issue 6, 2016. December-January

   

GEORGIA'S NEW CABINET

Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili has replaced three ministers and named Economy Minister Dmitri Kumsishvili as the new Finance Minister.

After sweeping the parliament elections, Georgian Dream has opted for small tweaks to the government rather than major changes.

Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili is keeping his post, as are 13 out of the country's 17 ministers. One ministry - the State Ministry for Diaspora Issues - has been reclassified as a part of the Foreign Ministry.

The biggest changes are slated for the country's economic team: Finance Minister Nodar Khaduri is being replaced by former Economy Minister Dmitri Kumsishvili, and former Business Ombudsman Giorgi Gakharia has been tapped to take over the economy portfolio.

Gakharia joined the Georgian Dream government in 2013 as Business Ombudsman. He was named Secretary of the Economic Council under the Prime Minister in 2014.

Minister of Regional Development and Infrastructure Nodar Javakhishvili has also been dismissed, set to be replaced by Zurab Alavidze.

Alavidze currently heads the Strategic Project Coordination Department of the government's Administration. Previously, he served as deputy economy minister in 2009.

He has worked in the finance and banking sectors as well, and holds a master's degree in business administration and a doctorate in economics according to media reports.

Kvirikashvili also named Viktor Dolidze as Minister of Euro-Atlantic Integration. Dolidze, who joins the team after leaving the opposition Free Democrats, replaces Davit Bakradze, whom was tapped to serve as Georgia's ambassador to the U.S.

Dolidze has held several high ranking diplomatic assignments, serving as Georgia's ambassador to NATO, as well as ambassador to Austria and Hungary. He is a lawyer by profession.

Other changes include moving the State Minister for Diaspora Issues into the Foreign Ministry; former State Minister Gela Dumbadze will work in the diplomatic corps, according to media reports.

The cabinet was approved by the Parliament on November 26. Under Georgian law, the PM's candidates for cabinet positions must be submitted to Parliament. Parliament committees officially nominated the candidates and the Parliament approved the list.

The full list of cabinet members, and their biographies, can be found at gov.ge website.

- Prime Minister - Giorgi Kvirikashvili;
- Minister of Finance and First Vice Prime Minister - Dmitri Kumsishvili;
- Minister of Agriculture - Levan Davitashvili;
- Minister of Culture and Monument Protection - Mikheil Giorgadze;
- Minister of Defense - Levan Izoria;
- Minister of Economy - Giorgi Gakharia;
- Minister of Education and Science - Aleksandre Jejelava;
- Minister of Energy - Kakha Kaladze;
- Minster of Euro-Atlantic Integration - Viktor Dolidze
- Minister of Environmental Protection - Gigla Agulashvili;
- Minister of Foreign Affairs - Mikheil Janelidze;
- Minister for IDPs issues - Sozar Subari;
- Minister of Internal Affairs - Giorgi Mghebrishvili;
- Minister of Justice - Tea Tsulukiani;
- Minister for Labor, Healthcare and Social Affairs - Davit Sergeenko;
- Minister of Corrections - Kakha Kakhishvili;
- Minister of Sports and Youth Affairs - Tariel Khechikashvili;
- State Minister for Reconciliation and Civic Equality - Ketevan Tsikhelashvili.

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