The President of Georgia opened gas-main pipeline in Poti today and lit the natural gas as well. Gasification of Poti is the part of President's initiative "Gas for every village in Georgia" that was fulfilled in most of the cities around Georgia. Full gasification of Poti will end in year and a half. As the President stated the project is of high importance not only for the local population, but in regards of attracting investments as well and for the development of Poti in general.
"Due to my assumptions, in order to turn Poti to a city of full values. This way the population will reach 100 thousand in about five years, so it is necessary to develop industry. It is impossible to develop industry without communications. Three years ago we agreed with Americans and brought the pipeline in, after which Socar started to cell around the country. Americans made this pipeline within the frames of Millennium Challenge program and by the way the process went in much better way than in case of water pipeline, some problems appeared during this project. It means that this day is of historic importance for this region. Natural gas has never existed in Poti, normal water pipeline has never existed as well and the population had electricity with some limitations. In reality, it was no natural gas or electricity for opening enterprise. This city was built on empty land, on a marshland. Since Niko Nikoladze created railway and port communication, none of the governments did anything in order to turn Poti a city. Now the car has started to operated; the water pipe and gas-pipe were made, and what's most important the electricity was brought in; plus communications in every direction. This is why it is possible to develop Poti with a high tempo.
Our plan is to turn Poti to a city with 100 percent of employment rate, but it is impossible without big enterprises, that will use free economic zone and by tax infrastructure that was created specially for this purpose. I am very glad that it will give us a chance to bring the enterprises in. We had no electricity and gas before, how could some enterprise open without having elementary conditions? Poti has never been adapted to city life. Now Americans built a pipeline of high pressure. We have brought 110 megawatt electricity, when only 15 megawatts were free, this is why not any serious factory could start operating here. Now we together have to create conditions, in order to bring the investors in", the President of Georgia stated.
Mikheil Saakashvili visited Gvatua's family in Poti, where he personally lit up gas. Due to the statement made by the President of Georgia, the merit of Georgian and Azerbaijani cooperation and friendship is that the price on natural gas is not increasing, despite the price increase on it on the world market.
"I want everyone to understand what does the cooperation with Azerbaijan means to us (our evil-wishers ask this question often). When everything around the world is unpredictable we have long-term contract with Azerbaijan, according to which, the price on natural gas shouldn't increase. Our economy is not growing the way we want, but we still have growth and everything is comparable. It is true that people have very difficult living conditions, but if we have no economic growth this tragedy will turn in a real tragedy.
Despite all, one of the reasons of our development is that we have stable chance to supply energy sources. This is a result of our cooperation and partnership with Azerbaijan.
We will finish the construction of water pipeline in Poti and not a single house will have water problem any more. We have brought natural gas in, as it was promised. Construction works in Poti airport are actively going on. The construction will get more intensive soon and the city will have its own airport. All of this will make big enterprises start operating and Poti population get 100 percent employed. This is our main intent and it is included in our regulationsas well", Mikheil Saakashvili stated.