Issue 6, 2018. October-November



Georgia jumped forward three places in the annual Doing Business Report, which ranks 190 economies based on 11 different criteria.

Georgia is the easiest place to do business in the region, according to the World Bank's 2019 Doing Business report.

The annual report ranked Georgia 6th out of 190 countries, up from 9th place in the 2018 study.

Prime Minister Mamuka Bakhtadze praised the results but called for even better scores next year.

"This progress indicates a tremendous step forward towards integrating our country in the global economy and is evidence that reforms implemented by the Georgian government are successfully serving the economic development of our country," Bakhtadze said at a press conference on October 31.

"The annual improvement of the country's ratings . . . is a prerequisite for our country to become an unconditional leader not only in the Caucasus, but in the greater region in terms of economic development and ease of doing business. Georgia is already one of the most reliable economies of the world and we plan to further improve our results. You may know the vision of our government: Georgia should be in the top five in all the international ratings," he said.

The new ratings place Georgia ahead of neighbors in the region and indicate the country is competitive with European and other developed economies. Georgia scored below New Zealand, Singapore, Denmark, Hong Kong, and South Korea. It was ranked above Norway, the United States, the United Kingdom and Macedonia.

Overall, Georgia scored well on the ease of opening a business (2nd place), registering property (4th place) and protecting minority investors (2nd place). The country earned its lowest rank in resolving insolvency (60th place).

Mercy Tembon, the regional head of the World Bank, praised Georgia's consistent improvement in the rankings.

"Georgia has been consistently advancing in the ratings over the years, and this is a [testament to] progressive reforms and programs that improve the business environment. More precisely, reforms implemented this year and planned for the future will further advance Georgia's position," she said.

Bakhtadze expressed hope that Georgia will continue to improve as more reforms come online.

"I am confident that our country will further improve these data and if we consider that International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Arbitration will soon have its presence in Georgia, this step will help us turn our project initiative into a reality and Georgia will become a business and arbitration hub," he said.

The Prime Minister noted that Georgia is working with the World Bank on its Human Capital Development Project, "which is greatly important for our country and the proper utilization of our youth's resources and potential."

He added that the best sign of success will be when the country can resolve its biggest economic challenge: poverty.

"We have a lot of economic challenges in Georgia, though the biggest is poverty. Ultimately, such success stories will help us in making Georgia stronger in economic terms and turn it into a regional economic hub. That is the prerequisite for eradicating poverty in Georgia once and forever," he explained.