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TBILISI, October 30 (Itar-Tass) — Georgia is ready for negotiations with Russia on reappearance in the Russian market of Georgian agricultural products.
Georgia’s new Minister of Agriculture David Kirvalidze said in an interview with Tbilisi’s Aliya newspaper that the Georgian side “is ready to host Russian experts, to offer all conditions for consideration of the situation and for a positive settlement of the situation /of reappearance of Georgian products in Russia/.” He said “Georgia will organise a special working group, which, should the experts come, will provide all necessary assistance to them.”
As yet, the new minister has not personal contacts with the Russian side, he continued. “I hope it will happen soon,” he added.
On Monday, the minister had a meeting with the country’s new Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili, during which they discussed an option of re-entering the Russian market.
On October 24, Ivanishvili said, “I am unable to name the day when this may happen, but I believe that mending trading and cultural relations between Georgia and Russia will be possible before long.”
He noted, “The resumption of trade relationship between the two countries meet their interests.” “There is a hope that Russia will remove all barriers and lift restrictions on Georgian products import. I have no agreements with Russia and there are no contacts with the Russian authorities in this aspect. I feel there are chances for lifting these restrictions,” Ivanishvili said.
“In due time Russia’s restrictions on import of Georgian products have been conditioned by Georgian leader Mikhail Saakashvili’s statement,” he stressed.
In August Ivanishvili said, “President Saakashvili’s non-diplomatic statements on the Russian leadership led to Georgia lost the opportunity to import agricultural products to Russia long before.” Then Ivanishvili pledged that “If his coalition comes to power, the Georgian Dream will do its best to resume Georgian agricultural supplies to the Russian Federation”.
Earlier, Saakashvili said, “The Russian authorities took decisions that banned Georgian agricultural products supplies in order to put pressure on the country’s leadership.”