Georgia: Digital Economy

H.E. Mr. Archil Dzuliashvili, Ambassador of Georgia to India

New Delhi: In our century the world is rapidly shifting to digital era and developing higher value added economy. The digitalization is reshaping our economies and societies. The impact the digitalization is having on the economy, on the efficiency of the company, in our day lives- is significant. The technology absorption is crucial for further development and now a day’s access to technologies and internet, became a human right!
In recent years Government of Georgia has conducted successful reforms in developing knowledge-based and technology-driven economy.
Started from the governance, Georgia is developing e-Government concept quite rapidly, taking the best practices into consideration.
Georgia is running the Justice house with one-stop-shop principle; you can get an ID card, with the drive through principle in 5 minutes; register a business in justice café drinking coffee and served by the remote operator.
One of the flagship projects is Broadband for all projects through which the whole country will be covered by high speed fiber optic internet connection. The timeline of the project is three years. With the project, Georgia will become one of the leading network ready country. In 2020 the project should be completed.
In addition to internetization project, Government of Georgia, with the active support of World Bank as developed e-commerce training program for regional households and the SMEs. As well as developing regulatory framework for e-commerce activities.
In 2014, innovation and technology development support has been institutionalized by the government. Georgia’s Innovation and Technology Agency (GITA) was established, with the main aim to simplify and incentivize innovation and technology activities in the country.
In 2016 two Technological Parks have been established in the capital (Tbilisi) and in western side of Georgia (Zugdidi). The technological parks work with one-stop-shop principle, supportive, innovative, creative and tech-driven startups and projects, to be transformed from the idea into globally scalable projects. The TechParks are providing access to high technology equipment for prototyping, free co working space and technical assistance through the business incubation and acceleration programs. 22 Fabrication Laboratories (FabLab), equipped with the high technology, 3D printers, laser cutters, etc. are being established based on the Universities and TechParks. The project is being scaled up in the regions of Georgia, by establishing Community Innovation Centers (CIC) based on the libraries. Innovation Laboratories (iLabs), with the main direction of game development, Computer Graphics and Mobile Application have been established based on the universities, where demand oriented projects are being developed.
For developing inclusive digital economy agenda, the Information Access Center (IAC) with the special opportunities for deaf people and for the people with less eyesight has been established in 2016. The IAC is equipped with the Braille Shift Equipment, where the special need trainings are being conducted.
In2016, Government introduced the start up venture financing program Start Up Georgia. In the framework of the program, Government is financing tech based startups and the top 20 winner startups are trying to develop innovation and technologies in the area of EduTech, HealthTech and FinTech Etc.
In addition to this, having the strategic gateway location, connecting Europe to Asia, Government of Georgia is developing Digital Silk Road concept-digitalized partnership between the Silk Road Countries. (5g, Internet of Thing, Cloud System, AI, VR, etc.)
Georgia is one of the first countries not only in the region but also in Eastern Europe to implement the idea of digital customs. The new custom code, together with the upgraded customs infrastructure will meet the EU requirements and will contribute to facilitation of international trade.
In 2019 Government intends digitalization of public service under one online platform to increase the efficiency of the service delivery. The challenging task is eradicating fraud in the reliability of certificates of origin. The Government plan to proceed and upload all customs related documents, signatures, seals, copies of stamps through block chain system, as its most reliable technology for the storage of database.

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