European Integration

Disinformation by Alia as if the Association Agreement Binds Us to Import Chemical Waste

9 January, 2019

December 24 - January 13 issue of Alia newspaper featured an interview by a journalist Levan Javakhishvili with a representative of an organization My Batumi – Irakli Jankarashvili. Levan Javakhishvili claimed that the Association Agreement (AA) with the European Union obliges Georgia to import and utilize chemical waste. He also added that it is planned to build a chemical waste utilization factory which would make it life and health threatening to live in Adjara.

The information disseminated by Levan Javakhishvili is a lie, because:

  1. AA does not include import and utilization of hazardous waste from the EU countries to Georgia;
  2. Law on Import, Export, and Transit of Hazardous Waste prohibits import, export, and transit of any kind of waste on the territory of Georgia.
  3. The project by EBRD and the Ministry of Finance of Adjara aims to build a household waste utilization polygon in Tsetskhlauri village near Kobuleti. The project has nothing to do with the import and utilization of the chemical waste.

Fact #1: AA does not include import and utilization of hazardous waste from the EU countries to Georgia.

The Association Agreement signed between the European Union and Georgia in 2014 does not include import and utilization of hazardous waste. The Agreement aims to converge the Georgian legislation with the European one in terms of environment protection regulations and chemical waste utilization, but it does not include any entries related to the import or transit of hazardous waste.

Fact #2: Law on Import, Export, and Transit of Hazardous Waste prohibits import, export, and transit of any kind of waste on the territory of Georgia

Myth Detector contacted the Ministry of Environment Protection and Agriculture of Georgia that explained that the Law on Import, Export, and Transit of Hazardous Waste acts in Georgia. The Law prohibits the import and transit of hazardous waste on the entire territory of Georgia.

Fact #3: The project by EBRD and the Ministry of Finance of Adjara aims to build a household waste utilization polygon in Tsetskhlauri village near Kobuleti. The project has nothing to do with the import and utilization of the chemical waste.

The landfill construction project in Tsetskhlauri village near Kobuleti has been planned through participation of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), and Ministry of Finance of Adjara.

Myth Detector contacted the Caucasus Environmental NGO Network (CENN). CENN explained that the polygon construction project in Tsetskhlauri village does not concern the utilization of chemical or other hazardous waste and it aims to utilize only the household, solid waste. According to a CENN representative, Kakha Rukhaia, such polygons already operate in Tbilisi and Rustavi.

In 2016, Batumi City Hall also announced a tender for the construction of the waste utilization factory, however, at this stage, the project is paused. Neither the given tender, nor the planned Tsetskhlauri project relates to the import/utilization of the hazardous waste.


Ana Kistauri
Regional Network of the Media Literacy Lab