The trade turnover between Georgia and Russia could grow to 8 billion US dollars a year. This, according to a Rosbalt correspondent was the message of German Glef, Russia's Minister of Economic Growth, at a press conference in Tbilisi. Trade between the two countries currently totals only 250 million dollars per year, and Russia is Georgia's most major foreign trading partner: 16% of Georgia's foreign trade turnover comes from Russia. After Russia comes Georgia's next closest neighbour, Turkey.
Gref was leading the delegation of businessmen and representatives of Russian executive powers in the First Conference of Russian Business in Georgia. The conference ran Friday through Sunday. Before the start of the press conference, German Gref and Georgia's Economic Minister, Eraklii Rekhviashvili, signed a protocol regarding the results of two-way discussions concerning Russians entry into the World Trade Organization (WTO). Georgia is now supporting Russia's entry into the WTO.
The Georgian parliament earlier gave a recommendation to the country's authorities against assisting Russia with its entry into the WTO. After the so-called 'velvet rose revolution' Michael Saakashvili persisted in lobbying for Russian interests, including WTO entry. For this reason the parliament has now taken a path contrary to their first decision.
The parties also signed an agreement concerning additional measures needed for the development of economic partnership between Georgia and the Russian Federation. Gref stated that he sees no barriers whatsoever to joint trade between Georgia and Russia, nor to unrestricted travel between the two countries.