On 11 December 2014, the Agricultural Projects Management Agency presented the 105 enterprises funded as a part of its implemented projects. The Prime Minister of Georgia and representatives of the Government of Georgia, the diplomatic corps and international organisations attended the presentation. The Prime Minister spoke about the projects implemented in the agricultural sector: “With the aim of facilitating the creation of new enterprises, we started to implement the Preferential Agro-Credit project and the Agricultural Product Processing Enterprises Co-Funding project. These projects are being successfully implemented. The Government of Georgia is also optimistic about the Product of Georgia project which creates multiple opportunities for developing local production. In total, as a part of all three projects, 105 enterprises have already been funded, 580 enterprises have been expanded and reequipped and more than ten thousand people are employed in the enterprises opened with the government’s support.”FactCheck
took interest in the Prime Minister’s statement and verified its accuracy.We have already written about the Preferential Agro-Credit and Product of Georgia
projects and so we will not go into the details of these projects again in this article.FactCheck attended the presentation held by the Agricultural Projects Management Agency. Booklets describing ongoing agricultural projects were handed out during the presentation and included comprehensive information about the enterprises funded (both new and expanded or reequipped) as a part of the Preferential Agro-Credit project: enterprise types, amount of agro-credit, purpose and number of employees. We studied the information thoroughly and, as the subject of the research is the number of employees in these enterprises, we focused upon those relatively larger enterprises employing between 20-150 people. We selected several enterprises and contacted the owners directly in order to find out the number of their employees. Here is the data collected by FactCheck:
Laurus LTD has taken a credit amounting to USD 150 thousand as a part of the Preferential Agro-Credit project. It has repaired and set up a laurel factory which exports its production to Kazakhstan and Russia. There are 130 people employed in the factory as seasonal staff (lasting six-to-eight months) and 30 are employed on a permanent basis.
The Vaziani Company LTD constructed a grape processing enterprise with a loan worth USD 600 thousand received from the Preferential Agro-Credit project. The company exports its production to different countries (Ukraine, Russia, China, etc.). It employs 40 people.
The SD Georgian Subtropical Fruit Company LTD finished placing citrus-processing lines and building a storage and refrigeration farm with a credit worth USD 420 thousand. Subtropical fruit for export is being packed in the refrigeration farm. There are 50 permanent workers in the enterprise with the number increasing to 150 seasonally.
The Georgian Wine and Alcoholic Beverages Company LTD received a loan amounting to USD 600 thousand as a part of the Preferential Agro-Credit project and purchased the necessary equipment for producing wine. There are 130 people employed in the company.
Parnavazi LTD received an agro-credit of USD 600 thousand. The company produces wine for export. According to a representative of the enterprise, there are 100 people employed in the company. The number increases seasonally.
ABD Georgia LTD received USD 300 thousand as a loan and opened a meat-processing enterprise equipped with a hog slaughterhouse. The meat is used for producing sausages.
Entrepreneur Badri Geradze took advantage of the Preferential Agro-Credit project and received a loan of USD 150 thousand. He set up a greenhouse farm oriented mainly on herbs and has been exporting products to Russia. He employs 50 people.
Samegobro LTD received a loan of USD 470 thousand and opened a fruit-processing factory. The company produces apple extract for export. There are 80 permanent and 150 seasonal employees in the company.
The Hazelnut Export Company LTD received a credit of USD 600 thousand for a hazelnut-processing factory. There are 180 people employed in the enterprise.
Unigray Georgia LTD opened a soy-processing factory with 90 employees.
Anka Fair Trade built a hazelnut-processing factory with a preferential agro-credit of USD 600 thousand. There are 20 employees with the number growing to 100 on a seasonal (July-December) basis.
We have also withdrawn detailed information from the Agricultural Projects Management Agency regarding the number of employees in projects implemented in the agricultural field. According to the information received from the Agency, there are 10,644 people employed in total in the Preferential Agro-Credit, Agricultural Product Processing Enterprises Co-Funding and Product of Georgia projects. As of today, there are 9,165 people employed and the remaining 1,479 (679 people in the Agricultural Product Processing Enterprises Co-Funding and 800 people in the Product of Georgia projects) will be employed after the start-up of the implementation of the funded projects. There are 1,965 people employed in the 89 new enterprises funded as a part of the Preferential Agro-Credit project whilst 7,200 people are employed in the 580 reequipped enterprises; however, this last number includes those people who had been working in these enterprises before the expansion/reequipping. The Agricultural Projects Management Agency did not provide us with information on how many people have been employed in the expanded/reequipped enterprises funded as a part of the Preferential Agro-Credit project.
According to the Agricultural Projects Management Agency, 9,165 people have been employed as a part of their three aforementioned projects. New factories (89) employ 1,965 people whilst the expanded/reequipped factories employ 7,200 people. The latter is the total number of the employees in the factories before and after the expansion/reequipping. We do not have information about the number of employees in these factories before the expansion/reequipping.According to the information acquired by FactCheck, it can be said reliably that 1,965 jobs have been created in the agricultural field (in 89 new factories). However, it is impossible to say exactly how many people have been employed in the 580 factories since the expansion/reequipping. If the Prime Minister was referring to the people employed in these factories both before and after the reequipping, then his statement is true. If, however, he meant that ten thousand jobs have been created as a part of the implemented agricultural projects, then he is trying to mislead the public.