First round of free trade talks between Georgia and China will be held in Tbilisi in January, Georgian Economy Minister, Dimitri Kumsishvili, told a government session on Friday.
“We hope to conclude negotiations by next October,” he added.
Kumsishvili was in Beijing on December 10 where he and China’s International Trade Representative, Deputy Minister of Commerce Zhong Shan signed a memorandum of understanding on the launch of free trade talks.
Speaking at the same government session in Tbilisi on December 11, PM Irakli Garibashvili said that he expects talks will be “completed within a year”.
He said that after striking free trade agreement with China, Georgia, which already has free trade treaties with the EU, Turkey, Russia and other Commonwealth of Independent States, will turn into “unique hub and connecting link between Europe and Asia.”
“That’s precisely what we are actually starting to materialize today,” the Georgian PM said.
“We should have very close, constructive and pragmatic relations with all the countries,” PM Garibashvili said.
“Georgia should become a real hub for trade and it should no longer be a place for some kind of confrontation and conflicts. It should be a hub for trade, agreement, tourism; we have all the resources for that,” he added.