Georgian opposition hire lobbying firm in U.S
Georgia, Tbilisi, Sept. 3 / Trend N.Kirtzkhalia /
The Our Georgia-Free Democrats (OGFD) opposition party led by Irakli Alasania has hired a Washington-based lobbying firm BGR Government Affairs LLC, which is part of BGR Group with operations in Europe too, civil.ge website reported.
BGR Government Affairs LLC was hired not directly by the party, but through BGR Gabara, a London-based subsidiary of BGR Group, which provides government relations services mainly in London and Brussels and media relations services across Europe.
Contract value and duration is not yet known.
"At the time of filing [July 22, 2011] the Parties have not reached an agreement with regard to duration, fee and expenses. At the time of filing the foreign registrant [BGR Gabara] has not recieved any fees or expenses," according to documents filed by BGR Government Affairs to the U.S. Justice Department.
According to United Georgia-Free Democrats (OGFD) party talks are still underway on fee and duration of the contract.
"Information [on contract value and its duration] will be made publicly available as soon as these consultations are over," Vako Avaliani, a spokesman for UGFD party, told Civil.ge on September 2.
BGR Government Affairs, which describes itself as "bipartisan lobbying firm", says that activities on behalf of the client includes providing "outreach to U.S. government officials, news outlets and other individuals within the United States... for the purposes of promoting a stronger Georgian democracy through fair, open, and honest elections in 2012."
BGR Group was co-founded in early 1990s by Haley Barbour, now Mississippi governor and previously a powerful Washington lobbyist and Ed Rogers, a former advisor to George Bush senior.
Meanwhile, also in July the Georgian National Security Council has extended for at least six months its contract with one of the leading lobbying firms in Washington, Podesta Group. The contract is worth USD 300,000 and the sides have agreed to discuss in November possibility of its extension for six more months.