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ISET Economist Blog

A blog about economics in the South Caucasus.
Sep
09

Tchiatura and the Resource Curse

Tchiatura is a small but resource rich and picturesque town, situated in the province of Imereti in Western Georgia. The abundance of an important natural resource, manganese ore, was the main reason for establishing the town in 1879. Akaki Tsereteli, the famous Georgian writer from the same region, initiated the manganese mining back then. To increase efficiency in transportation of the mineral, a railway was built in 1895. By this period, up to 6000 workers were employed in the Tchiatura mines and the extracted material made up about 50% of total world...
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Guest — RT
> The natural resources of Georgia belong to the Georgian people, and therefore the profits made by extracting these resources sho... Read More
Tuesday, 10 September 2013 1:01 PM
Guest — Danae Olsen
Mostly, I agree with RT. Although, it would be nice to see the people of Chiatura benefit more from this "black gold" industry tha... Read More
Friday, 04 October 2013 8:08 PM
Guest — Danae Olsen
Also, great job Giorgi for choosing to write about your hometown who live here.
Friday, 04 October 2013 8:08 PM
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Jun
14

Khudoni and Georgia’s Energy Policy Dilemma: Go Green or Go Greedy

Khudoni, Georgia’s largest hydropower investment project, is again making the headlines.  According to a recent statement by Georgia’s Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Kakha Kaladze, the project will be put on hold at least until March 1, 2014. To give readers a bit of context, Khudoni’s planned capacity is in excess of 700 MW; its annual generation potential stands at about 1,5 TW/h, dwarfing other hydropower projects currently under MoUs with international investors. If built, Khudoni would be the second largest HPP in Georgia after Enguri...
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Guest — Irakli
Indeed, policy document is probably the most important document. Without having objectives it is difficult to decide what does cou... Read More
Monday, 17 June 2013 3:03 PM
Guest — Iñigo Arencibia
Having achieved the stable operation of the energy sector over the last decade, the time is ripe for the country to make a detaile... Read More
Saturday, 15 June 2013 11:11 AM
Guest — blintu
Nice post! It is interesting, why they stick to only hydropower when there is need and possibility to diversify the sources of ene... Read More
Thursday, 27 June 2013 8:08 PM
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Apr
27

Georgia Going with the Wind?

The obsession of hydropower may have obscured other green energy options for Georgia. For one thing, investment in hydro is not happening as fast as could have been expected a few years ago. But, much more importantly, the bulk of hydropower would be in any case generated in the summer, when Georgia does not need as much of it. The surplus electricity is supposed to be exported to Turkey. But why destroy pristine landscapes and interfere with fragile ecosystems for the sake of exporting electricity to Turkey? Has anybody ever tried to answer the question...
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Guest — Eric
Simon, you get the most-substantive-and-fun-to-read-comment-of-the-year award!
Monday, 29 April 2013 8:08 AM
Guest — Simon Appleby
I worked on a capital raising in Indonesia some time ago on a pump-storage wind-hydro project, which enlightened me to the negativ... Read More
Sunday, 28 April 2013 7:07 PM
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Feb
08

Will Georgia Stay as a Net Importer of Electricity in 2013?

For the first time since 2007 Georgia is a net electricity importer. Last year the total electricity generated declined by 4% and a 1.3% increase in total internal demand was observed. What should we expect from 2013? The year started with a reduction of final electricity consumption tariffs by 3.5 tetris for those consuming less than 300 kWh of electricity. This change will definitely lead to a greater demand from households and businesses. How will Georgia meet this higher demand? Attracting investments for new generation capacities? As more than one y...
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Jan
31

Can Big Business Gain Access to Cheap Electricity?

Can Georgia stimulate investment in electricity intensive sectors by providing cheap electricity? To answer this question one has to first analyse the behavior of the wholesale electricity market during the past 3 years. According to the order of the Georgian Ministry of Energy on the “Electricity (Capacity) Market Rules”, a “Direct Customer” (or one who buys electricity wholesale) is someone who, for their own needs, consumes 7 million kWh of electricity per year (As this amount is approved with basic directions of the state policy in the Energy Sector)...
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Dec
05

The Energy Tariffs Debate: Stoking the Fire

The possibility of lowering electricity and gas tariffs has become one of the top discussion topics across the country in the last few weeks. Little wonder of the interest in this topic at the time when gas and electricity bills reach their annual peak in account of the increased use of electricity and gas during the winter period. Having thought for some time about the feasibility of reducing electricity and gas tariffs in the near future, one comes across three questions that need to be addressed before jumping to hasty and potentially regrettable deci...
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Guest — Eric
Of the many great points in the blog, I chose this one to amplify: "Since they are paying in full, aren’t consumers entitled to a... Read More
Wednesday, 05 December 2012 10:10 PM
Guest — Inigo
Indeed Eric, customer service is the most obvious missing link. Let's look at the two issues you bring up.First, the point about t... Read More
Thursday, 06 December 2012 1:01 PM
Guest — Inigo
Michael, why would a taxi driver invest in a new car when his revenue is stable enough while using a fifth-hand opel? That being s... Read More
Friday, 07 December 2012 8:08 AM
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