Is 500 million euros for Georgia from the EU contingent on the implementation of electoral agreement with opposition?
Georgia will receive 500 million euros from the European Union and its international partners to deal with the coronavirus crisis, said Andrius Kubilius, head of the delegation of the European Parliament to the Euronest Interparliamentary Assembly (which includes members of the European Parliament and Eastern Partnership countries).
According to him, a precondition for receiving this assistance is the fulfillment of obligations undertaken by the Georgian government, especially related to the electoral system and the rule of law.
The head of the delegation of the European Parliament also reminded the ruling party of Georgia of the agreement reached on March 8 with the opposition on electoral reform, which caused heated debate in recent days.
Kubilius posted his statement on Twitter.
“I would like to draw your attention to the enormous support of more than 500 million euros that the EU and its international partners provide to Georgia on the ground so that it can carry out reforms and combat the COVID-19 pandemic and its social and economic consequences,” Kubilius wrote.
The EU will allocate 3 billion euros to all EU neighbors. Of these, 962 million are for member states of the Eastern Partnership, including Georgia.
“A key component of this support is related to Georgia’s commitments, especially in the areas of rule of law, anti-corruption, electoral reform, economic governance and transparency,” Kubilius wrote.
According to the member of the European Parliament, in addition to direct assistance, the EU is negotiating with international organizations to increase the volume of loans for Georgia.
Kubilius noted that the International Monetary Fund agreed to allocate 345 million euros to Georgia, of which more than 280 million will be allocated in 2020.
At the end of the statement, Andris Kubilius reiterated the need for the government to fulfill its obligations.
“We must work together in an atmosphere of trust in order to defend democracy and achieve our goals. This confidence can be strengthened only by fulfilling the commitments made and these promises, including those reached on March 8, 2020 by all the main political parties in Georgia,” he wrote.
According to the memorandum signed on March 8, 2020, the ruling party and the opposition agreed that:
In the parliamentary elections scheduled for October 2020, 120 of the 150 deputies will be elected by party lists, and 30 by the majoritarian system, in single-member constituencies.
The five percent electoral barrier for parties will be reduced just this one to 1%
A bloc that receives less than 40% of the vote will not be able to form a government
In addition, as representatives of the opposition participating in the meeting noted, an agreement was also reached on the release of political prisoners.
However, authorities say that the opposition is lying, there is no such condition in the agreement, since there are no political prisoners in Georgia.