One Armenian expert believes 'it can bring new energy to these relations'.
After Mamuka Bakhtadze’s election as the Prime Minister of Georgia, his Armenian colleague Nikol Pashinyan sent his official congratulations and invited him to visit Armenia.
“I am confident that, during your tenure as prime minister, the mutually beneficial cooperation between Armenia and Georgia will continue to strengthen for the benefit of our peoples,” said Pashinyan.
Pashinyan once again stressed the importance of the relationship between Armenia and Georgia. Practically all his speeches on Armenia’s foreign policy pay special attention to Georgia. Pashinyan obviously wants to give a new stimulus to the relationship between Armenia and Georgia. He sent a strong signal when he made his first official visit abroad to Georgia.
After speaking with the former Prime Minister of Georgia Giorgi Kvirikashvili, Pashinyan said that they were on good standing and had agreed to strengthen cooperation between the countries.
Expert circles in Armenia are now discussing how the topic of how cooperation between the countries will develop under Georgia’s new prime minister.
Johnny Melikyan, an Armenian expert on Georgia, is convinced that Bakhtadze’s becoming Prime Minister of Georgia will not affect cooperation between the two countries:
“The prime minister was replaced, but the ruling party did not change. This means that there will be no negative developments in the relationship between Armenia and Georgia… The prime minister can bring new energy to these relations.”
The expert is also sure that the different foreign policy vectors of Armenia and Georgia will not have a negative impact on the relationship between the two countries.
Melikyan also believes that there is a decrease in the influence that Turkey and Azerbaijan have on Georgia:
“In recent years, economic relations between Georgia on the one hand and Azerbaijan and Turkey on the other have been actively developing. However, almost all major infrastructure projects such as the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars [railway] have been completed. At the moment, it is unclear where Azerbaijani companies and the state of Azerbaijan can still invest.”
Georgia is one of Armenia’s main economic partners. Trade turnover between the countries can reach up to USD 500 million annually. Georgia is a key transit country for Armenia, with about 70% of Armenian exports going through it.