Georgia stands strong against Russia’s trade threats

Paata Zakareishvili today said that Russia has little leverage to pressure Georgia., 26 Jun 2014 - 16:36, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgia’s thorough and effective policies means Russia has little leverage to pressure Georgia, said Georgia’s State Minister of Reconciliation and Civic Equality in response to a statement by Russian official Sergey Lavrov.

Earlier today the Russian Foreign Minister announced Russia would use defensive mechanisms against Georgia, Ukraine and Moldova if the Association Agreement (AA) had negative consequences on the free trade zone of Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).

"The Russian Foreign Minister’s statement concerns not only Georgia, but also those states who are signing the AA. These are Moldova, Ukraine and Georgia. So, based on the context, Russia has the fewest resources against Georgia, because as a result of Georgia’s reasonable and proper policies, we are practically distanced from Russia both economically and politically,” Minister Paata Zakareishvili said.

"We do not even have diplomatic relations. Therefore, we don’t expect Russia can seriously harm Georgia. However, naturally, today’s announcement shows that Russia has already imagined what will happen in an economic direction,” he said.

As for the policy towards the occupied territories, Zakareishvili noted that occupation already occurred in 2008 and he was not expecting significant changes in this direction. However the Government was slowly working to improve this situation, he said.