ISET

ISET Economist Blog

A blog about economics in the South Caucasus.
Feb
22

A Georgian Man without Land Is Nobody?

Just like Duddy Kravitz, Georgian men (and women) appear to be reluctant to part with their parcels of land, however small and unproductive. Whatever the reason, Georgia sees almost no structural change out of agriculture, and, as a result, very low productivity and income growth for the poorest strata of its population. As of today, employment (or, rather, under-employment) in agriculture is a staggering 45% of Georgia’s total labor force.  As we have written on these pages, the notion that too many Georgians are ‘stuck in agriculture’ was a k...
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Irakli Kochlamazashvili
Land tax is property tax. The rate varies depending on the type of the land (arable, pasture etc.) and the location (municipality ... Read More
Tuesday, 23 February 2016 3:03 PM
Pati Mamardashvili
Farmers might have some other motivations for being reluctant to part with their parcels of land. Holding multiple small land plot... Read More
Wednesday, 24 February 2016 8:08 AM
Hans Gutbrod
This is interesting, and I agree with much of what you say. I agree with key things, such as improving infrastructure and reducing... Read More
Wednesday, 24 February 2016 1:01 PM
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Feb
15

Young Seedlings of Georgia's Agriculture

Ancient Greeks’ fascination with Georgia was not limited to the Golden Fleece. Legend has it that ‘Georgia’ comes from the Greek γεωργός (Georgios), reflecting the advanced land plowing practices of Georgian tribes, which distinguished them from their nomadic and yet unsettled neighbors. The Georgians (Colchians and Iberians, to be more precise) must have really made a formidable impression on the Argonauts to deserve such a recognition. Fast forward to the 21st century. According to the CIA World Factbook, Georgian agriculture employs a mind-blowingly h...
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Hans Gutbrod
interesting, thanks for sharing. I think the Internet makes it a bit easier for young people to stay out in the countryside, becau... Read More
Monday, 15 February 2016 4:04 PM
Lasha Lanchava
I was positively surprised when Baia mentioned 'nudge' – referring to Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein’s New York Times bestseller... Read More
Tuesday, 16 February 2016 8:08 AM
Nana Moutafidou
Nice piece, thanks for sharing
Tuesday, 16 February 2016 8:08 AM
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Feb
01

Let It Be

When Saint Nino, one of Georgia’s most venerated saints, traveled to Mtskheta back in the fourth century, she stopped to erect a grapevine cross in Foka, a small settlement on the shores of Lake Paravani some 2000 meters above sea level. Saint Nino must have traveled during the summer since, even today, Foka is very difficult to reach for about 6 months of the year. Heaps of snow block all major access roads during the long and cold winter.  In 1992, as Georgia was going through the most painful period in its recent history, six young Georgian ...
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Eric Livny
I could not agree more. There are plenty of talented people across Georgia's countryside, but instead of doing good for the commun... Read More
Tuesday, 02 February 2016 6:06 PM
Pati Mamardashvili
Let it be! Let all Georgian villages be inspired by Poka example! As a synonym to Let it be! (dae asec ikos) Georgians often use t... Read More
Tuesday, 02 February 2016 5:05 PM
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Jan
23

Mandatory Flour Fortification in Georgia: a Boon or a Burden for the Poor?

We are what we eat – in the near future Georgians are likely to be reminded of this universal truth.   Soon the Georgian Parliament will be discussing a small but important change, which will affect something as significant and vital as bread, along with pasta, khachapuri and anything made with wheat flour. The Georgian legislators will be considering a law, according to which flour fortification will become mandatory in Georgia. Mandatory food fortification is a contentious issue. The proponents of the law argue that this change is a great way to d...
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Guest — PatiMamardashvili
I agree with the author that flour fortification might correct some nutritional deficiencies which seem to be quite prevalent amon... Read More
Saturday, 30 January 2016 7:07 PM
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Nov
30

Innovation Starts Here and Now … In Lisi Lake Greenhouses

The difficulty lies not so much in developing new ideas as in escaping from old ones.  -John Maynard Keynes- Innovation is not necessarily about Silicon Valley Hi-Tech startups. It can happen here and now. In particular, contrary to what we have been hearing from our liberal politicians, there is plenty of scope for innovation in Georgia’s agriculture! Owned and managed by Nina Petrova-Dzneladze, Lisi Lake Greenhouses is a family farm located on 0.6ha of land in Tbilisi. The complex consists of three medium size greenhouses producing fruit and ...
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Guest — Ia
Great blog article!Since due to land restrictions farmers in Georgia often do not have access to large areas of land, greenhouse i... Read More
Wednesday, 16 December 2015 3:03 PM
Guest — PatiMamardashvili
Thanks for the comment, Ia! Indeed, farmers (not only in Georgia) often stick to old production techniques and hardly innovate. Th... Read More
Monday, 01 February 2016 7:07 AM
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Nov
07

Georgian Tea: Finding New Strength in Unity?

After many years of chaos and utter collapse, Georgia’s once glorious tea industry is again showing signs of life. More and more individual farmers and businesses – mostly very small, but some quite ambitious, such as Geoplant (known for its “Gurieli” brand) – grow, process and pack tea. Despite competition from major producing countries and international brands, Georgian tea has great export potential because of the value attached to it all over the former Soviet Union.  While the potential is clearly there, it is not at all clear what strategy sho...
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Irakli Kochlamazashvili
A good case on second level (or second-tier) cooperative from Peru: http://ica.coop/en/media/co-operative-stories/peruvian-coopera... Read More
Tuesday, 10 November 2015 7:07 PM
Irakli Kochlamazashvili
Those outstanding players of the industry (like Giorgi and Avto) might be given a special status/share in the cooperatives to give... Read More
Sunday, 08 November 2015 1:01 PM
Eric Livny
Thanks for your comment, Irakli! My sense is that processors could be included in a growers cooperative as associated members. The... Read More
Tuesday, 10 November 2015 3:03 PM
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