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ISET Economist Blog

A blog about economics in the South Caucasus financed within the institutional grant by the Government of Sweden.
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  • Eka Nozadze
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  • Salome Deisadze
  • Ia Katsia
  • Salome Gelashvili
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  • Norberto Pignatti
  • Giorgi Papava
  • Luc Leruth
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The FitCoin Revolution!
Once dubbed Georgia's Abu Ghraib, Gldani Prison #8 has gone through a substantial makeover since its darkest hours in September 2012. The entire staff was replaced or retrained during 2013, swiftly and effectively ending human rights violations. The following year, the prison won a prestigious award as Georgia’s best correctional facility. In 2015, about 180ha in the prison’s backyard became home to Bitfury, an international bitcoin industry pioneer.
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On Pepsi, McDonald’s and the Promised Land
Back in 1991, I attended a big “Does Socialism Have a Future?” conference hosted by my alma mater, the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. The session I remember most vividly featured a Hungarian dissident, a poet, ridiculing ineffective communist propaganda. “Communists”, he told a sympathetic audience, “tried to convince us that jeans can cause impotence in young males and that Coca Cola is bad for people’s health”.
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2018 – A Turning Point for the Georgian Electricity Market?
This year Georgia’s electricity market will have to go through some crucial reforms. The signing of the Association Agreement and Georgia’s accession to the energy community in October 2016 imposed some important obligations on the country to reform its energy markets. For the electricity market, 2018 will be a turning point.
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Does Georgia Have One of the Largest Shadow Economies in the World?
In January 2018, an IMF Working Paper published new results on the shadow economy situation for 158 countries from 1991 to 2015. According to Medina and Schneider (2018), the shadow economy in Georgia during that period constituted, on average, 64.9% of GDP – the highest indicator in the world! In 2015 (the last year available), things were slightly better for Georgia, with the share of the shadow economy standing at 53%.
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What Georgia Can Teach Sweden about Energy Efficiency
I believe we all are bound by the notion that technology is the thing. We might be convinced it’s a sign of progress. Those very clever engineers have finally saved humanity, not just by envisioning what will save the masses from wasting their minutes and seconds, but they also help to propel all sorts of time-saving devices. There are, of course, good reasons to argue for how important technological advances are.
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Organic Is The New Black!
Year by year, interest in the organic market is increasing all over the world. According to STATISTA, worldwide sales of organic food quintupled in the 21st century (18 billion USD in 2000, versus 90 billion USD in 2016), while, according to TechSci Research, the total worth of the market is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 16.15% during the period 2017-202I2.
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