The U.S. State Department’s 2022 Investment Climate Statement on Georgia positively assessed Georgia’s business, trade, and investment-related regulatory framework and legislation, but highlighted shortcomings in the judiciary.
The report said, “there is an increasing lack of confidence in the judicial sector’s ability to adjudicate commercial cases independently or in a timely, competent manner, with some business dispute cases languishing in the court system for years.”
The report underscored that companies complain about inefficient municipal level decision-making, shortcomings in enforcing intellectual property rights, lack of effective anti-trust policies, and alleged political meddling.
Regarding the war in Ukraine, the report noted that the National Bank of Georgia and Georgian financial institutions act fully in accordance with the financial sanctions imposed by the United States and others on the Russian Federation. “Compliance with international financial sanctions is systematically checked during the onsite inspections of financial institutions,” it added.
The State Department highlighted the case of the Anaklia Development Consortium, consisting of international investors including a U.S. company, which was awarded a contract in 2016 to develop a deep-sea port in Anaklia town. It noted that the authorities terminated the deal with the ADC in 2020 resulting in a legal dispute. “While the government has stated its commitment to the construction of the Anaklia Deep Sea Port Project, a tender has not yet been announced,” it said.
It emphasized, however, that despite these challenges, “Georgia ranks high in the region as a good place to do business.”
The lengthy document comprehensively discusses Georgia’s capital markets, banking system, investment incentives, property rights, and regulations, as well as the Government’s efforts for privatization and tackling corruption.