Regulatory Processes for Georgia's SME Sector: Introduction of the SME Test
Monday, 27 November, 2023

In a landmark event held today, key stakeholders gathered to explore and introduce a groundbreaking initiative aimed at making the regulatory process more efficient and tailored for Georgia's Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs). The focus of the day was the presentation of the SME Test, a tool designed to ensure that legislative initiatives are specifically suited to the needs and challenges faced by SMEs.

The event commenced with a series of welcome addresses that underscored the government's commitment to fostering sustainability, competitiveness, and prosperity within the SME sector. Tamar Sulukhia, Director of ISET and ISET Policy Institute, along with Tsisnami Sabadze, Head of the Economic Policy Department at the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia, and Giorgi Nanobashvili, Economic Development Team Leader at UNDP Georgia, jointly emphasized the significance of the SME Test project in achieving these overarching goals.

The morning progressed with an insightful session led by Norberto Pignatti of ISET Policy Institute and Lorenzo Allio from allio|rodrigo consulting. The speakers delved into the intricacies of the SME Test process, explaining its rationale in the context of legislative initiatives. This session elucidated how the SME Test, when integrated with ex-ante Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA) and public consultation, could pave the way for decision-making that is finely tuned to the unique requirements of SMEs.

A pivotal moment in the conference was the presentation of findings from a practical application of the SME Test to the Draft Law of Georgia on Water Resources Management. Norberto Pignatti showcased the insights gained and demonstrated the practical application of the SME Test Methodology. The audience gained valuable insights into how the Cost Calculator, developed under the project, can enhance the decision-making process.

An open discussion, moderated by ISET Policy Institute’s lead economist Davit Keshelava, provided a platform for stakeholders to share their perspectives, ask questions, and engage in a dialogue about the implications and potential of the SME Test in shaping Georgia's regulatory landscape.

Davit Keshelava concluded the event with closing remarks, summarizing the key takeaways and expressing optimism about the transformative impact the SME Test could have on Georgia's SME sector.