Georgian Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili spoke about Georgia's plans to become a "strong linking point" in the economic relations between East and West. In his opening speech at the conference on regional economic integration in South Caucasus and Asia on 16 May, attended by the members of the Georgian Government, as well as the representatives of the United States and the European Union, the Prime Minister stressed strategic importance of East-West transit corridor.
"Georgia is in the center of this corridor and we have opportunities and the desire to become a strong linking point in the economic relations between East and West. Our aim is to become a modern trade and transit hub," the PM said.
According to Ivanishvili, Georgia has to take several important steps in order to fully develop the transit corridor. "We should improve transit infrastructure, provide attractive business environment, which will help developing private sector. We should have fruitful cooperation with our neighbors. Investing in infrastructure is our priority," he said "rehabilitation of key international roads, and construction of East-West highway are underway. We are interested in developing port infrastructure as well," the Prime Minister added.
Ivanishvili also said corruption has been eradicated in Georgia. He noted that tax rates in the country are one of the lowest in the world. This, according to the Prime Minister, should help attracting new business to Georgia. "There is no low-level corruption in the country, the new government has eradicated elite corruption, and we will not allow it to happen again. Convenient tax environment, flexible customs system and good investment base will attract business to Georgia," he said.