Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development Natia Turnava held a meeting with the representatives of the tourism sector and discussed the problems emerged due to the corona virus pandemic as well as the possible solutions. The representatives of the hotels, travel associations and tour operators attended the meeting.
The Minister briefed the audience on the rules and regulations that will apply to visitors from the five countries that Georgia has unconditionally opened its borders. In addition, the sector got acquainted with the information about special electronic platforms and applications, which will benefit business visitors wishing to come to Georgia.
Since Georgia's inclusion on the list of safe countries, and the issuance of the recommendation on the possible reopening of borders to these countries, the Georgian Government has been engaged in active bilateral negotiations with several EU member states. According to, Press Service of the Government Administration, agreements on the unconditional bilateral reopening of borders have already been achieved with Germany, France, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia.
“The Government is helping the tourism sector very intensively to mitigate the impact of the crisis and lessen the difficulties. At today’s meeting, in addition to listening to the challenges they face and talking about the possible solutions, we introduced them with the latest news regarding the current epidemic situation in those 15 countries who together with Georgia has declared a safe country by the EU,” – the Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development stated.
The Minister noted that despite the challenges in the field, it is heart-warming that there is some space for the optimism especially in terms of proactive local tourism.
“We have introduced the industry the information and marketing campaign we have launched to make as many local tourists, including foreigners living here, as possible to travel around Georgia so that everyone can contribute to the development of the local tourism,” – Natia Turnava said.
Furthermore, last week it was announced that, in the frame of the GRETA project (Green Economy: Sustainable Mountain Tourism and Organic Agriculture), the EU, Sweden and Austria have launched the Tourism Development Initiative (TDI), a call for proposals for grants in the area of tourism development in the municipalities of Mestia, Lentekhi, Tsageri, Oni, Ambrolauri, Sachkhere, Chiatura and Tkibuli.
In May of 2020, Georgian Economy Minister Natia Turnava discussed the Georgian tourism sector at a meeting with Dominik Papenheim, the Thematic Coordinator for Economic Development and Market opportunities at the Delegation of the European Union to Georgia, Philipp Steinheim, the representative of the German development agency (GiZ) and Gerhard Schaumberger, the Head of Austrian Development Agency in Georgia. Turnava spoke about EU-supported programs in the tourism sector, and noted the importance of EU technical assistance for the guide certification programme and said that Georgia has already a good experience in cooperating with Austria in the project which aims to train guides in Gudauri, as reported by local media agenda.ge
Natia Turnava, the Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia, discussed ongoing and upcoming cooperation programs between Georgia and the European Union with Lawrence Meredith, the Director for Neighbourhood East of the Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations of the EU and Vincent Rey, the Head of Cooperation at EU Delegation to Georgia during the online meeting, last week. The parties discussed in details the support programs implemented by the Government of Georgia within the framework of the anti-crisis plan, including the parts implemented with the support of the European Union. At the beginning of the meeting, Natia Turnava thanked the EU representatives for the support that Georgia received from the EU to putting Georgia in the list of so called “green” countries. According to the Minister, this decision is a recognition of Georgia’s effective anti-pandemic measures.