Lawrence Meredith, Director of Eastern Neighborhood and Institution Building at the European Commission and Carl Hartzell, European Union Ambassador to Georgia, visited Imereti and Adjara to highlight EU support for Georgian regions.
The visit, which took place on October 20-21, focused on the EU’s economic and investment plan for Georgia and focused on connectivity issues in and around the Black Sea.
The EU delegation to Georgia tweeted:
This week the director @LMeredithEU and ambassador @CarlHartzellEU traveled through Imereti and Adjara to highlight the impact of EU support to citizens.
Learn more about the trip and our ideas within the Economic and Investment Plan: https://t.co/gxYAQKjmbH# EU4Georgia pic.twitter.com/7gE9vwOulx
– EU Delegation Georgia ???????? (@EUinGeorgia) 22 October 2021
At first, Lawrence and Hartzell visited Baia’s Wine, a winery owned by young woman entrepreneur Baia Abuladze in the village of Obcha, Imereti. The guests toured the vineyard and learned about traditional winemaking methods.
Carl Hartzell tweeted:
Lunch break at Baia’s Wine in Imereti with @LMeredithEU. Glad to see that the European councils have helped these young winegrowers to create high quality products and to take full advantage of the ????????????????? #ALEAC.# EU4Georgia pic.twitter.com/6lA5SCH2gn
– Carl Hartzell (@CarlHartzellEU) 20 October 2021
The visit continued to Zeniti, a small village in the municipality of Kobuleti in the Ajara region. As part of the EU’s economic and investment plan and in cooperation with the EIB, 1,000 rural communities like Zeniti will benefit from a high-speed internet connection.
The first day ended in Tsikhisdziri, Kobuleti municipality. Meredith and Hartzell visited Shukura, a local restaurant that recently employed five young people with hearing loss, who found the opportunity through the Batumi Job Fair, organized as part of the EU’s Skills4Jobs program.
The second day took place in the capital of Ajara, Batumi. EU officials visited the site of the residential building which tragically collapsed on October 8.
During their visit to the port of Batumi, the guests highlighted the potential impact of the Economic and Investment Plan on transport links across the Black Sea.
The delegation visited a local construction company, Nova, which has increased its production through the EU4Business-BERD line of credit.
Finally, the two-day visit ended with talks on Black Sea connectivity. EU officials, representatives from the EIB, EBRD and the World Bank, discussed their visions for the future of the Black Sea with young people and local entrepreneurs.
Lawrence Meredith tweeted:
Great to meet with Georgia Shipping Agency @MTA_Georgia today together with @BEI @BERD @EU in Georgia ???????? to discuss how to strengthen the connectivity of the Black Sea, improve ???????? Georgia’s export potential and job creation for young people! pic.twitter.com/NsofpSNSv1
– Lawrence Meredith ???????? (@LMeredithEU) 21 October 2021
Due to COVID-19, the discussion took place in a hybrid format with a limited number of attendees at the event.