Azerbaijan, Baku, 16 August /corr. Trend E.Rariverdiyeva / Georgia's withdrawal from the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) will not affect the country or its international relations, but may get reflected in the economy.
"After withdrawal from the CIS, foreign policy of Georgia will not undergo changes, Mikhail Saakashvili states, but the Georgian diasporas in Russia, seriously integrated into the political and economic system of Russia and Georgia, will not allow long development of conflict between the countries," Azerbaijani politician, the President of the Fund for Social Developments, Rashad Rzaguliev, told Trend .
On 14 August, the Georgian Parliament at the session unanimously voted for the Republic's withdrawal from the CIS, Interfax reported. The proposal, which was earlier made by the President of the Country Mikhail Saakashvili, was supported by all 117 MPs participating in the voting.
Russian expert Sergey Markedonov believes that membership to the CIS provided Georgia with the possibility of visa-free passage by 2001, and up to now gives many possibilities to earn in Russia, Ukraine and other countries of the CIS, which had economic base.
"However when the policy began to take upward, Georgia's membership to the CIS became little from the point of view of its national interests," the Head of Department of Problems of International Relations of the Institute of Political and Military Analysis, Markedonov told Trend .
British Analyst on Georgia Ksenia Skvortsova also considers that Georgia's planned exit from the CIS will have a significant effect on the country or on its foreign affairs. However, in the opinion of expert, economically Georgia will not sustain losses as other republics. He said that Georgia will continue to enjoy a working energy relationship with Azerbaijan, for example, regardless of CIS ties. "That said, I do not expect that Armenia or Ukraine, for example, will be leaving the CIS in the short term as many of the ties and projects that the organisation promotes, particularly economically, are quite beneficial," Skvortsova, Control Risks Center (London), told Trend .
Ukrainian expert Alexander Paliy says that the withdrawal from the CIS will not have economic impacts on Georgia. "The economy of the country will be affected by the destroy of economically important facilities as a result of bombing, for re-establishment of which time and specific efforts will be necessary," expert of the Institute of Foreign Policy of the Diplomatic Academy at the Foreign Ministry, Paliy told Trend .
The British analyst said that Georgia has been considering leaving the CIS for several years (most seriously in 2006, following the Russian import ban on wine and mineral water) so this is not a complete surprise. According to Skvortsova, Georgia's current biggest trading partners are Turkey, Azerbaijan, Ukraine and Germany (followed by Russia). So the analyst doesn't expect the exit to impact significantly on trade volumes.
GUAM member-states have also been establishing closer commercial and political ties as an alternative to the CIS, he said. "It could further complicate the relations with Russia regarding energy trade but even CIS members have not been immune to recent gas price increases," Skvortsova said.
According to the analyst, if Georgia acquires the necessary bilateral agreements with remaining CIS members then, it can also continue trading with them on preferential terms.
However, Rashad Rzaguliyev considers that
there is a principal difference between Georgia's withdrawal from CIS and sharp
aggravation of this country's relations with Russia. According to him,
if first one takes purely declarative character, then the second one is fraught
with the most serious and harmful consequences for both sides.
According to the expert, losing the Russian market is an unacceptable factor for the Georgian political- financial groups. "And the President Saakashvili either needs to consider this fact or face serious political complications in his own country," said Rzaguliyev.
The Ukrainian expert Paliy considers that there are many factors, which brought Georgia to this decision. Possibly, according to him, this is the attempt by Georgia to re-consider status of Russian peacemakers and obtain support from the USA, which played a decisive role in precisely such settlement of this crisis. "Statements are being made that the Russians no longer can act as peacemakers, and they must be replaced. I think that Georgia hopes that in the contact with the Americans and the Western partners, it will be possible to change the format of the peacemaking mission in Abkhazia and South Ossetia," Paliy said.
However, the Georgian experts positively
assess Georgia's decision to withdraw from the CIS.
Expert Soso Tsiskarishvili considers that the CIS, as an organization, disgraced itself. "While the United Nations came together four times to settle the problem of Georgia, impression created that the CIS is in leave, or in other," independent expert Tsiskarishvili told Trend .
The Georgian expert Archil Gegeshidze also positively assesses the decision of Georgian Government to withdraw from the CIS. "This was a correct choice both from a political and moral point of view," independent expert Gegeshidze told Trend .
In addition, he noted that this "is not single-time action, and approximately annual procedure should pass for its realization".
Rada of Ukraine discussed bill on denouncement of agreement on creation of the
CIS. It was devised by the MP of the pro-president fraction of "Our
Ukraine - People's Self Defence" Yuri Kostenko.
The CIS is an organization, which arose after the collapse of the USSR. The CIS combines 12 states. Georgia's entrance to the CIS was formalized by the decision of the state heads on 3 December 1993, which was made due to appeal of the Head of the Georgian State, Edward Shevardnadze dated 8 October 1993. From the republics of the former USSR, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia have not joined the CIS.
The material was prepared with the participation of V.Zhavoronkova (Baku); R.Agaev (Moscow); N.Kirtskhalia (Tbilisi); Z.Novosvitskiy (Kiev).
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