Georgia will soon be the fourth wine producing country entered a Free Trade Agreement with China, following New Zealand, Chile and Australia.
Georgia's Minister of Agriculture, Levan Davitashvili told reporters: "We have successfully concluded the 7 months of negotiations. After the completion of the corresponding formalities, the free trade agreement will come into effect, from the beginning of the second half of 2017, Georgian wine, mineral water and agricultural products are among the goods that will be exported to China with zero tariffs and without any transition period.”
The FTA talk was an efficient one between the two countries. Initiated in September 2015 at World Economic Forum by China’s Premier Li Keqiang and Georgia’s former Prime Minister Irakli Gharibashvili, the MOU was signed in December 2015, then through 3 rounds of negotiation in February (Tbilisi), May (Beijing) and July (Tbilisi) in 2016, plus several small format meetings in September 2016, at where both countries agreed on all rested and unsolved issues.
Georgia exported more than 2.6 million bottles of wine to China in 2015. It is expected in 2016 this export will reach more than 5 million bottles, according to Georgia’s Minister of Economy, Dimitry Kumsishvili. This was back by the first eight months 3.5 million bottle wine export result made.