Mr. Livny chose to devote his TEDx talk to the challenge of bringing education and light to Georgia’s remote villages. He told the story of Dzevri, a tiny village in Imereti, which used the help of an American couple, Cathy McLain and Roy Southworth, to revolutionize the local school. In just three years, college enrolment for local school graduates went from zero to almost 100%.
Based on February data from three open bazaars in Tbilisi, the average cost of cooking one standard portion of Imeretian khachapuri stood at GEL3.47. Someone opting for the convenience of shopping in one of Tbilisi’s major supermarket chains, such as Carrefour, Fresco, Spar, or Goodwill, paid 4.40GEL (representing a premium of about 28%) for cooking exactly the same khachapuri.
When I left Russia back in late 2006, attempting to cross a busy Moscow street bordered on suicide. Instead of slowing down before a zebra crossing, Russian drivers were in the habit of accelerating so as to signal their intention NOT to stop. Understandably, pedestrians had no choice but to adjust their street crossing strategies accordingly.
As suggested by ISET’s most recent Consumer Confidence report, Georgian consumers are in no mood for shopping. And, yet, Tbilisi is abuzz with excitement about the recent lavish opening of East Point – a giant new shopping and entertainment center, the largest of its kind in the country. Thus, while consumer confidence is hitting new lows, the supply of retail space and world-class shopping malls continues to hit its highs.
The average residential rental price first fell to 7.46 USD per m2 (a historical minimum since the start of the study) in October 2015, and after a slight peak in the following month reached 7.66 USD per m2 by the end of the year.