Georgia's Black Sea city of Batumi will join locations across all five continents that form the UNESCO Creative Cities Network, a project celebrating hotspots of creative industries and offering opportunities for experience-sharing and collaboration throughout the globe.
Eliso Bolkvadze, Georgia's internationally acclaimed pianist and the chairperson of the country's Parliamentary Committee on Culture, revealed the news after her meeting in Paris on Sunday as part of talks with Ernesto Renato Ottone Ramirez, UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Culture.
Bolkvadze said talks with the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation had been "concluded with success" and would see the coastline city become a member of the initiative that UNESCO says "offers unparalleled opportunities" for cities hosting active creative fields.
Bolkvadze, who was named a UNESCO Artist for Peace in 2015 and received a second mandate for the status earlier this year, said the membership would "strengthen our country's positions on the international cultural and tourist maps".
The Georgian pianist has also collaborated with the UNESCO through her work on Batumi Music Fest, an annual festival of classical music in the city, organised by her Lyra Foundation since 2013.
The Creative Cities Network involves seven categories of creative industries for cities looking to join: Crafts and Folk Art, Design, Film, Gastronomy, Literature, Media Arts and Music. Submissions are reviewed by experts and member cities and ultimately approved by the organisation's director-general.