Policy context. In 2013, as a follow-up to public consultations on improving the acting company law in Georgia, a working group was established to elaborate a new Draft Law of Georgia on Entrepreneurs (“Draft Law”). The working group was created under the Private Law Reform Council of the Ministry of Justice of Georgia, the USAID-funded Judicial Independence and Legal Empowerment Project, which was succeeded by the Promoting Rule of Law in Georgia (PROLoG) Activity, with both projects implemented by the East-West Management Institute (EWMI), was a cooperating partner. The group was comprised of Georgian academics and legal practitioners. International experts provided consultations.
The initial goal of the group was to introduce a number of default rules that parties could contract around by prior agreements. This was expected to increase the efficiency of the legal environment and decrease the uncertainty, leading to smoother implementation and enforcement. The Association Agreement signed with the EU brought about the need for additional provisions, both imperative and default, to be included in the Draft Law.
Consultation process. The consultation process conducted has been comprehensive. A set of questions for each different group of stakeholders was developed, and official consultations/interviews have been organized and conducted with: legal practitioners, business associations, investment companies, Government of Georgia (GoG) agencies, civil society, and research institutions, among others. In total, 26 meetings with 40 stakeholders took place. Stakeholders were asked to provide their opinion about key articles in the forthcoming law. Most stakeholders agreed that some sort of revision to the current Law of Georgia on Entrepreneurs (“Current Law”) is needed. However, opinions about the ideal structure for the new law varied. A summary of the stakeholders’ positions is reported in the section.