On June 8, 2014, ISET organized an excursion to the Aragvi hydro power plant (HPP) near the Georgian ski resort of Gudauri. The purpose of the excursion was to see how HPPs can contribute to employment and better infrastructure in highland areas. Students from ISET, representatives of non-government, private, international and other local organizations joined the excursion.

Built with modern technologies, the HPP was constructed by a joint partnership of Georgian and Austrian investors with particular attention being placed on minimizing negative environmental impacts. Although the HPP had a small, one-time, impact on local inclusive growth, in terms of employment, it is not a source of income for the local municipality. A shortcoming in Georgian law enables the power plant to use the water resources for free and thereby reduces the ability of the municipality to implement local programs.

On November 28, ISET hosted a seminar delivered by two experts working for E-control Austria - Eszter Suele (Resident Twinning Advisor) and Leo Kammerdiener (Senior Tariff and Regulatory Expert). E-control Austria is collaborating with the Georgian National Energy and Water Supply Regulatory Commission (GNERC) under a “Twinning Project” to improve the Georgian electricity regulation that promotes long-term investments and helps establish methods of tariff calculation in line with European Union standards and best practices, namely incentive-based tariff regulations.

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