Announcing about the plans to launch construction of new and the country "second largest city" on Georgia's Black Sea coast close to breakaway Abkhazia, President Saakashvili said on December 4, that the building of the new city would lay "a firm foundation" for return of the lost territories.
Speaking in Zugdidi, a town few kilometers from the Abkhazia administrative border, Saakashvili said that construction of the new city with the name of Lazika would start next year. He said the new city would be located between Anaklia, close to the Abkhaz administrative border and Kulevi in the north from port town of Poti.
"It will be the large city; I suppose in ten years at least half million people will be living there and it will be Georgia's second largest city after Tbilisi and it will be the major trade, commercial and economic center in western Georgia, on the Black Sea coast," Saakashvili said.
"It means that from spring of next year we will launch large-scale infrastructure works... Several thousand of people will be employed on construction of the new city," Saakashvili said. "We have already launched talks with several huge investment groups in Asia and Europe to invest in construction of the new city. I call on Georgians living abroad... to return and construct together with us Georgia's new pride, the new city from scratch."
He said that in early 1990s Russia chose Abkhazia for striking on Georgia, because the region was the most promising in terms of its economic potential.
"Despite of these plans by the enemy, we will create new large city, which will be much bigger than it is now Sokhumi and which will be a firm foundation for Georgia to definitely return to the rest of its territories, because Georgia is of course unimaginable without Abkhazia. But for that to happen we need to develop and to wait for the moment when the empire inevitably collapses and when we definitely have a possibility and a room for maneuver in order to restore our positions," Saakashvili said, adding that meanwhile Georgia needed "permanent development and progress."