A Few Tips for Doing Business in Georgia
Primary language is Georgian.
People are typically very hospitable.
Guests are considered a gift.
Age, position and power usually earn respect.
Normal greeting is shaking hands.
Business culture is not formal.
Maintain eye contact when meeting people.
Business cards are exchanged without formal ritual.
Relationships in business are important.
People are direct.
Table manners are relaxed.
Patience is important in business.
Decisions are made by upper management.
Over the centuries, the country of Georgia has been dominated by several empires such as Rome, Persia, the Ottomans and the Soviet Union. From 1918 to 1921, the country was independent and then was forcibly incorporated by the USSR. It then became independent again in 1991, when the Soviet Union was broken up. For several years, Georgians were affected by a series of corrupt leaders.
Georgia is located in Southwest Asia, bordering the Black Sea, between Turkey and Russia, with a sliver of land north of the Caucasus Mountains.
Georgians view themselves to be part of Europe geopolitically.
Government: Semi-presidential republic
Capital City: Tbilisi
Literacy Rate: 99.56%
Size: Slightly larger than West Virginia
Population: 4.9M (2022 est.)
Population Growth Rate: 0.03% (2022 est.)
Population Distribution: Population concentrated in the central valley, particularly in Tbilisi in the east. Smaller urban concentrations on the Black Sea coast.
Unemployment Rate: 10.66% (2021 est.)
Currency Exchange Rate: 1 US Dollar = 2.60 Georgian Lari (February 25)
GDP: $17.694B (2019 est)
GDP Growth Rate: 10.47% (2021 est.)
Labor Force Breakdown: Agriculture - 8.2%, Industry - 23.7%, Services - 67.9% (2017 est.)
Major Industries - Agriculture (fruits, vegetables, dairy), steel, machine tools, electrical appliances, mining (manganese, copper, gold), chemicals, wood products, wine.
Total Product Exports - $3.92 B (2020)
Major Product Exports (2020)
Copper Ore - $828M
Cars - $403M
Ferroalloys - $250M
Wire - $212M
Major Export Partners (2020)
China - $499M
Russia - $460M
Azerbaijan - $441M
Bulgaria - $393M
Turkey - $228M
Total Product Imports (2020)- $8.72B
Major Product Imports (2020)
Cars - $717M
Refined Petroleum - $540M
Packaged Medicines - $351M
Petroleum Gas - $317M
Copper Ore - $256M
Major Import Trading Partners (2020)
Turkey - $1.48B
Russia - $1.05B
China - $974M
US - $629M
Azerbaijan - $490M
English Language Online News Sites
Georgia Today - general news - www.georgiatoday.ge (Note: bi-weekly)
The Financial - business news - www.financial.ge (Note: weekly)
Sampling of Companies
Georgia International Group – conglomerate - energy, real estate, mining etc. - www.gig.ge - Tbilisi
Georgian Oil and Gas Corporation - oil & gas - www.gogc.ge - Tbilisi
JSC RMG Copper - copper and gold mining - www.richmetalsgroup.com - Tbilisi
Kutaisi Auto - automotive parts - www.gig.ge - Kutaisi (Note: Part of Georgia Industrial Group)
Rustavi Steel - iron and steel - www.rmp.ge - Rustavi
Tbilisi Aircraft Manufacturing – aerospace - www.tam.ge - Tbilisi
TAM Management (TAMM) – aerospace - www.tam.ge - Tbilisi
Wissol Petroleum - oil & gas exploration and production - www.wissol.ge - Tbilisi
Georgian International Airlines – airlines - www.avia.ge - Tbilisi
Badagoni – wine - www.badagoni.com - Akhmeta
Baramba Ltd. confectionery products - www.barambo.ge - Natakhtari
STC Delta – defense - ammunitions, small arms, artillery - STC Delta - Tbilisi
National Holidays - 2023
January 1 - New Year's Day
January 2 -New Year's Holiday
January 7 - Orthodox Christmas Day
January 19 - Orthodox Epiphany
March 3 – Mother’s Day
March 8 - International Women's Day
April 9 - Independence Restoration Day
April 14 - Orthodox Good Friday
April 15 - Orthodox Holy Saturday
April 16 - Orthodox Easter Sunday
April 17 - Orthodox Easter Monday
May 9 - Victory Day
May 12 - St. Andrew's Day
May 26 - Independence Day
August 28 - Day of Assumption of Mary
October 14 - Svetitskhovloba
November 23 - St. George's Day
By Paul Mastilak