Albania the Focus of Discussion on Challenges of EU Integration Process

Nov, 2014

On November 6, Policy and Management Consulting Group (PMCG) held a public lecture and discussion about the coming challenges on the path to EU integration. Arben Malaj, President at the Institute of Public Policies and Good Governance (IPPM) and former Minister of Finance and Economy of Albania (1997-2005), delivered a lecture, together with Aleksi Aleksishvili, Chairman of PMCG, and Temur Beridze, Dean of the Faculty of Economics and Business at Tbilisi State University (TSU). Malaj gave a presentation and shared the experiences of both himself and his country on EU integration and emphasized that the road to EU is difficult but important. An active audience consisted of students and professors of the faculty of economy who had many interesting questions for the Albanian speaker. They discussed topics such as the impact of regulatory reforms for business, the importance of regional collaboration for the country’s economy and in the context of EU integration, growth and fiscal stability and other issues. “Avoid delays in implementation of the AA with the EU, because it will cause more polarization of the internal political environment of Georgia. That's what happened in Albania when it signed AA in 2003 but was fulfilled only in 2014. The Government should be very consistent and punctual in meeting all needs reflected in the AA. This is not for the benefit of EU, this is for the benefit of Georgia”, advised Malaj to the future policy makers. By the end of the meeting, Malaj and Beridze noted that they will discuss the possible options for an exchange program for Georgian students. The event was held under the project “Sharing experience of Visegrad countries’ EU economic integration for Albania”, financed by the Visegrad Fund and implemented by PMCG in collaboration with IPPM.
International Investment Forum Organized by PMCG is Underway

Oct, 2014

On October 29, “Georgia - Regional Hub and Asia’s Gateway to Europe”, the first International Investment forum held by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) together with the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development and organized by Policy and Management Consulting Group (PMCG) got underway.Irakli Gharibashvili, Prime Minister of Georgia and Wencai Zhand, Vice President (Operations 1) of the ADB officially opened the forum, with an introductory panel discussion entitled “Why Georgia Matters”. Later, the world’s economic trends and perspectives for the upcoming years were discussed by Giorgi Kvirikashvili, Vice Prime Minister of Georgia, Kurt Tonf, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of US Department of State (Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs), Makram Azar, Vice Chairman of Investment Bank and Chairman of Barclays Bank PLC and Simeon Djankov, Rector of the New Economic School in Moscow under the moderation of John Defterios, CNN’s Emerging Markets Editor and anchor of Global Exchange. The role of Georgia as a regional hub for Asia and as a gateway to Europe was analyzed in the context of the following panels: transport, logistics and manufacturing; energy; and tourism and retail panels. The forum, which aims to introduce Georgia as a country favorable for investment, with an attractive business enabling environment, streamlined regulations and advantageous location, brought together about 300 guests from Japan, India, China, Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, South Korea and other locations. Delegations consisted of senior government officials and representatives of private sector businesses, investment groups, chambers of commerce and the international development community.For detailed information follow the link below:International Investment Forum 
PMCG at International Development Consultants’ Career Fair in Washington D.C.

Oct, 2014

On October 8, Policy and Management Consulting Group (PMCG) participated at an international career fair organized in Washington D.C. by the Society for International Development (www.sidw.org). PMCG was pleased to participate as a sponsor of the forum that was organized for international development organizations to recruit talented individuals and to enhance the team’s ability to contribute in the process of delivering progress in developing countries.Representatives of PMCG introduced participants to the opportunities the company provides for professionals operating in the fields of policy advising, the social economic sector, doing business and business enabling reforms, public finance management, capacity building and institutional development.“Human resources is the major asset in the industry we operate in and having access to the most talented individuals with relevant experience is crucial to delivering progress in developing countries. We are delighted to join and support such an event and would welcome talented individuals in our team”, says Aleksi Aleksishvili, General Director at PMCG.
Supporting Regional Decentralization Reform via Capacity Building Facilitation

Oct, 2014

From July to September 2014, Policy and Management Consulting Group (PMCG) was actively engaged in a project funded by USAID Georgia, Good Governance in Georgia (G3) Program aiming to support local self-government reform in Georgia.PMCG’s team of consultants, with its invaluable experience, actively worked to facilitate the process of decentralization by assisting 14 newly-created municipalities to enhance the skills and capacities and to meet challenges that will arise after the launch of reforms.Within the framework of the project, PMCG designed and created efficient manuals covering the information session for newly-elected Mayors and Gamgebelis, focused on the key issues of the newly adopted Code on Local Self-governments of Georgia; recruiting/selecting municipality staff; municipal budgeting and state procurement. PMCG’s team also issued recommendations, organizational structures and sample templates to introduce effective tools of human resource management (HRM), state procurement and budgeting systems.To ensure the effective implementation of the suggested guidelines and manuals, our trainers conducted several trainings and introduced the effective tools in the above listed fields to about 200 officials from the newly-created governments.Please visit the links below for detailed information: USAID Georgia, G3 Program - Training Courses for Senior Civil Servants in 14 Newly-Created Municipalities Enhancing Municipal Budgeting and Procurement System HRM Tools for Officials of Newly-Created Municipalities
PMC Research Center and KAS Continue Presentations and Public Discussions of Policy Researches for Sustainable Economic Development

Oct, 2014

On October 3, PMC Research Center (PMC RC) together with the Konrad Adenauer Foundation organized the presentation and public discussion on two research findings and corresponding recommendations on the following issues: Effects of Clean Investment; Possible Challenges of Harmonization of Georgian Legislation with the Acquis Communautaire of the European Union in the Energy Sector. The researches were conducted in the framework of the project Policy Research for Sustainable Economic Development, which is developed by PMC Research Center, with the support of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation.The study of Effects of Clean Investment analyzes the effects of anticipated investments in renewable energy sources. More specifically, it examines the possible impacts of the development of clean energy sources on the country’s energy dependence, natural gases and employment level. The topic was presented by Ivane Pirveli, the Founder of the Association of Young Professionals in Energy of Georgia. The presentation covered the issues of the current situation in Georgia in terms of regulations and assimilation of clean energy, international practices to encourage investments in clean energy, the trade facilitation mechanisms of renewable energy, as well as the prospects of introducing these mechanisms in Georgia.Another topic - the Possible Challenges of Harmonization of Georgian Legislation with the Acquis Communautaire of the European Union in Energy Sector - was presented by Nikoloz Sumbadze, Vice President at Association of Young Professionals in Energy of Georgia. The research provided a comparative analysis of EU and Georgian energy legislation and the related challenges in electricity, natural gas, energy efficiency and renewable energy fields.Current trends in the Georgian energy sector, as well as the possible effects of harmonization of Georgian legislation with the EU energy legislation, were discussed during the event.
Costs and Benefits of Labor Mobility Between European Union and Georgia

Oct, 2014

On September 30, PMC Research Center (PMC RC) together with the support of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation hosted a presentation of the research findings and held a public discussion on the Costs and Benefits of Labor Mobility between European Union and Georgia. The research was conducted within the framework of the project “Policy research for sustainable economic growth”.In particular, the research observed the advantages and challenges that may be faced by the country’s economy, after visa liberalization. The discussion was also focused on the main trends and characteristics of labor migration from Georgia. Specific attention was given to the possible influence of the Association Agreement between the EU and Georgia and visa liberalization on labor migration to the EU.Representatives of the Government of Georgia, non-governmental and international organizations, as well as academic circles and the media attended the event.
PMCG Supports Government of Georgia to Enhance Legal Drafting Skills

Sep, 2014

On September 26-28, Policy and Management Consulting Group (PMCG) conducted trainings on Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA) for representatives of the Parliament of Georgia, legal departments of each ministry of the Government of Georgia (GoG) and for the Government’s administration itself.The course lasted three days and was carried out under the USAID, Good Governance in Georgia (G3) Program - Strengthen GoG Institutional Operations on Legal Drafting Skills and Cross Governmental Coordination.The objective of the module was to streamline the legislative process through improved coordination and awareness of policy and to improve the quality of legislation through development of technical legislative drafting skills.Participants were introduced to information about RIA, types of RIA, factors that should be considered during RIA and how it is used in developed countries.In addition to the theoretical component, the training included simulations that gave participants an opportunity to use their newly gained knowledge and analyze various aspects of developing regulations, in order to significantly increase their quality.
Enhancing Municipal Budgeting and Procurement System

Sep, 2014

Policy and Management Consulting Group (PMCG) continues to support local government reform in Georgia and strengthens the capacity of 14 newly created municipalities, under the USAID Good Governance in Georgia (G3) Program.Following a Human Resources Management (HRM) course, on September 26-27 PMCG conducted trainings on municipal budgeting and the State procurement system, attended by the employees of newly self-governing cities.The course is focused on enhancing municipal staff capacity and skills by introducing to them the legal basis of public funds management and expenditure, principles of procurement planning, procedural aspects of state procurement implementation and an overview of entire business processes, timeline and responsibilities of different units involved in the budgeting process according to the Budget Code of Georgia.The municipal budgeting course covered the following topics: Municipal budgeting process: Budget Code, budget calendar, system, cycle; Classification of municipal budget; Development of priority document, definition of priorities and stakeholders engagement; Budget revenues: Forecasting income from property tax and other fees; Transfers-equalization formula; Budget expenditure: Preparation of budgetary request; Program budgeting principles and rules, program budgeting forms; Budget execution and reporting The State procurement course was focused on: Rationale, objective and scope of the law on “State Procurement”; Procurement planning; Terms of use of Unified Electronic System of State procurement; Overview of the electronic means of state procurement (e-tender, simplified tender); Peculiarities of procurement objects (goods procurement, service procurement, procurement of construction works) in the purchasing process; Non-electronic means of procurement; Taxation system requirements; Monitoring and control of procurements; Procurement reports; Appeal and dispute resolution. In addition to the detailed training sessions, PMCG consultants conducted special practical case studies and developed a State procurement and budgeting manual. These courses will be conducted four times within the space of a month.
Supporting the Parliament of Georgia to Implement Sustainable Institutional Reforms

Sep, 2014

PMC Research Center (PMC RC), an independent non-governmental think tank, under the auspices of Policy and Management Consulting Group (PMCG) will assist the Parliament of Georgia to implement sustainable institutional reforms, by facilitating the development of a comprehensive Institutional Reform Plan (IRP), program-based budgeting and introducing effective donor coordination mechanisms.Through the newly enforced constitutional system, the project managed by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) aims to support the Parliament, as a credible institution with an essential, greater role in national policy-making and European integration.To meet the challenges faced and ensure the effectiveness of the Parliament as an institution, the PMC RC team will support the institution by conducting the following activities: Developing a comprehensive Institutional Reform Plan (IRP) for the mid-term period in a participatory and inclusive manner, focused on building strong linkages with the Parliament’s day-to-day activities; Assisting the Parliament in designing a program-based budget – develop a manual, train the Parliament’s Financial Department and relevant stakeholders and conduct on-the-job consultancy for the Financial Department; Introducing effective donor coordination mechanisms and conducting a donor coordination event.  
PMCG Enhances the Tax System of Georgia

Sep, 2014

Policy and Management Consulting Group (PMCG) has issued a number of final recommendations focused on simplification of the tax code of Georgia, under the USAID Economic Prosperity Initiative Program (EPI) to enhance the business environment of Georgia and to increase the effectiveness of tax administration.During the last year and a half, PMCG’s consultants, using their sound experience of working in this field together with the Ministry of Finance and its State Revenue Service, have been intensively working on streamlining tax legislation, which is crucial for the country’s economic development.At the first stage, our team identified the most challenging issues in the tax and customs system of Georgia. Most of them were related to the tax regulations that created additional barriers for specific business sectors.On the next stage, PMCG’s consultants continued to analyze and discuss the following issues: • Consolidating tax reporting • Revision of the tax reporting rules for profit tax • Taxation of reorganization of the enterprise • Revision of tax penalties regime • Defining clear taxation criteria for loan and equity types of income • Introducing anti-avoidance rule • Practical issues on profit tax and income taxTaking into consideration the best international practices and the results of the consultations with the business sector, the various Tax Code amendments initiated were mostly related to value added tax, income tax and profit taxes.Our team has also elaborated special situational guidelines, in order to make these amendments easily applicable in practice.   Follow the links below for detailed information:Simplification of Tax Code Economic Prosperity Initiative 
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