On November 15, a website Georgia and World (Geworld) released an article titled “Forecasts and analysis by a famous political analyst proved accurate.” The article provides some fragments from the interview of Moscow-based political analyst, Alexander Chachia, who claims in one of his remarks dated September 18-24, 2013 that the West will not invest money in Georgia’s agriculture and therefore, the country has to take a loan, which has already reached USD 13-14 billion.
Alexander Chachia, political analyst: “Do you think that [ex-President Mikheil] Saakashvili did not want to attract investments to industry and agriculture? He did, but nobody invested money. The West does not need Georgia’s industrial and agricultural products. The western capital will not invest money in these spheres. Just therefore, [ex-President Eduard] Shevardnadze and Saakashvili were taking loans from the West; they were borrowing money. Today, Georgia’s external debt amounts to GEL 13 or 14 billion. In the absence of our own economy, we have to take new loans to pay off only the interests of this loan. It is nothing but bondage.”
Geworld.ge’s claims that Chachia’s forecasts turned out to be accurate and that the West has not invested any money in the sphere of agriculture do not correspond to the truth. Only within the framework of the European Neighbourhood Programme for Agriculture and Rural Development (ENPARD), EUR 179.5 million has been invested in the development of Georgia’s agriculture for the period of 2013-2022. In addition, the information that Georgia’s external debt constitutes USD 13-14 billion is not true. By 2013, Georgia’s debt amounted to approximately USD 4.3 billion and increased to USD 5.2 billion by 2017.
Fact 1: The total budget for ENPARD in Georgia, covering the period of 2013-2022, is EUR 179.5 million.
The European Neighbourhood Programme for Agriculture and Rural Development (ENPARD) has been implemented in Georgia since 2013. The programme aims at reinvigorating the agriculture and the rural sector in the country with a thorough cooperation of government, civil society, and rural community. The total budget for ENPARD in Georgia, covering the period of 2013-2022, is EUR 179.5 million. According to the programme’s official website, additional GEL 222 million was allocated for III phase of the programme (2018-2022).
The Agricultural Cooperatives Development Agency was created in 2013 with the support of ENPARD. The aim of the agency is to promote rehabilitation of rural areas and agriculture through the development of agricultural cooperatives; to ensure social-economic development of rural areas; to improve productivity and competitiveness of agricultural products and develop national economy. 1121 cooperatives have been registered at the agency.
Fact 2: According to the data for 2013, Georgia’s external debt amounted to USD 4,202,026,000.
Georgia and World has released a number of interviews with Alexander Chachia, where he provides differing data on Georgia’s external debt. In the interviews released in 2013, he changed the figures twice: Chachia said on July 4, 2013 that Georgia’s debt constituted USD 2 billion; about two months later, on September 18, 2013, he increased the figure to USD 13-14 billion.
Alexander Chachia, 4 July 2013: “We know that Georgia has a debt at 2 billion and it means that even if economic upturn starts in Georgia, it will take us at least 30 years to pay off this debt. Those, who gave us this loan, are telling us: you will sell this facility at a certain price; so they are giving direct instructions.”
Alexander Chachia, 18 September 2013: “Today Georgia’s external debt is about USD 13 or 14 billion. In the absence of our own economy, we have to take new loans to pay off only the interests of this loan.”
According to the Finance Ministry of Georgia, Georgia’s external debt constituted USD 4,202,026,000 in 2013 and increased to USD 5,177,390,000 in 2017.
Geworld.ge has released the interview with Alexander Chachia three times. His quotation, where he talks about absence of western investments and external debt, remains unchanged in all of them.
- For the first time – on 18 September 2013
- For the second time – on 26 November 2014
- For the third time – 15 November 2018
Chachia is a Moscow-based political analyst, whose interviews are regularly posted on Georgian language pro-Kremlin websites – Sakinform and Georgia and the World (Geworld.ge). Simultaneously, Chachia is also a member of the Public Council of "Historical Heritage”, an organization that founded "Georgia and the World”. On February 13, 2014, Russian President Vladimir Putin awarded the Order of Honor to Chachia for his great contribution to strengthening friendship and cooperation with the Russian Federation, development of scientific and cultural ties.
Ad nauseam approach involves continuous repetition of the same idea so often that people start seeing the falsehood as the truth.