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President Salome Zourabichvili Meets with Representatives of Different Social Sectors in Kutaisi

Salome Zourabichvili, President of Georgia has held a meeting with representatives of different social sectors at Akaki Tsereteli Kutaisi State University. At the meeting, she has presented her view on prospects for developing the Imereti region to the local population and summarized her visit.

In her address, President Zourabichvili highlighted that the President of Georgia, within own authority, can be an advocate for regions, a mediator between a region and the central Government to develop own vision and strategy for promoting the region’s advancement.

President Zourabichvili has also summarized her visit to the Imereti region, stressing that Tskaltubo and Kutaisi together have a huge potential for tourism.

“Unfortunately, we often discuss issues in part and not as a whole. In whole, Kutaisi has a huge potential, meaning Kutaisi and Tskaltubo, Kutaisi and Gelati and Kutaisi and its surroundings. There are many historic, cultural, and industrial tourism attractions in Kutaisi and they should be promoted in whole if we aim at realizing Kutaisi’s full potential,” President Zourabichvili said.

In her view, Kutaisi should regain own place as the Georgian cultural capital, and for this purpose, she plans to continue cooperation with Georgia’s partners in order the country to be actively presented in Europe’s cultural life.

“One of my key objectives during international visits is to present our culture to Georgia’s partners; to let them know that this culture is a part of the world culture and European culture. Georgia is close to the European integration. Obstacles do exist considering the Brexit crisis and the current political environment in the European Union; however, Georgia can request and become a part of the European culture,” President Zourabichvili said. When people abroad are introduced to the Georgian culture, Georgia’s European integration is not questioned, she added, therefore, cultural areas should be developed in Kutaisi.

"One of the areas that is crucial for the future is archeology. The Ambassador of Poland is present here and I am grateful for him for attending this event. Georgian-Polish joint archeological expedition mission was established at this University, focusing on Colchis era archeology. I would like to offer them to carry out these expeditions under the patronage of the President of Georgia,” President Zourabichvili said.

She has also underscored the importance of Tskaltubo, being a jewel of Georgia. She believes that sanatoriums in Tskaltubo are distinguished for their architecture, locations, and parks, a distinction that even European sanatoriums cannot compete with. “Tskaltubo cannot exist without Kutaisi,” President Zourabichvili added.

"I do not approve the privatization of sanatoriums in Tskaltubo when investment conditions are not met," President Zourabichvili said, highlighting that this problem requires a prompt solution.

"Today, the time has come to see the development strategy in whole and to have the Government’s backbone. Many other things have already been done and revived. The airport is indeed very important,” President Zourabichvili said.

In her address, she has also discussed the importance of small and medium business development in the region, stressing that they lay a foundation for the country’s economy.

"What I have seen in this region is very encouraging. The region’s development depends on small and medium business; we cannot go back in the era of big factories, that period is gone. However, small business, being very flexible, can easily reach the European standards. Such businesses are found here. The company Herbia is a prominent example of how a small family business can become a medium business, exemplary for the entire region. Importantly, women are also actively involved in business,” President Zourabichvili said.

Her address also touched upon the household waste found on the Geguti road. President Zourabichvili believes that such places should not exist in Georgia’s cultural capital.

"I am aware that a project is being implemented to solve this problem. The only thing I could say is that this work should be done as quickly as possible; otherwise, it is impossible to develop tourism, culture and the city,” President Zourabichvili concluded.
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