EU, Austria, and Sweden announced €860,000 grant for tourism development in the mountainous regions of Georgia

EU, Austria, and Sweden announced €860,000 grant for tourism development in the mountainous regions of Georgia

In the frame of the GRETA project (Green Economy: Sustainable Mountain Tourism and Organic Agriculture), the EU, Sweden and Austria have launched the Tourism Development Initiative (TDI), a call for proposals for grants in the area of tourism development in the municipalities of Mestia, Lentekhi, Tsageri, Oni, Ambrolauri, Sachkhere, Chiatura and Tkibuli.

The EU, Sweden and Austria are calling for grant proposals under the Tourism Development Initiative (TDI) in tourism development for the mountainous Georgian municipalities. Ambassador of the European Union to Georgia Carl Hartzell stated: “Tourism is a key opportunity for the development of Georgia’s mountainous regions. The EU, together with Sweden and Austria, is launching this call within the framework of the GRETA project to support the recovery of tourism operators and to allow them to develop and expand their services and activities for the future. Our focus will be on environmentally friendly, community-based initiatives.” Ambassador of Sweden to Georgia Ulrik Tidestrom said that the COVID-19 crisis has hit tourism in Georgia hard, 'which further increases the relevance of our support'. With this call for tourism development initiatives, we aim to empower and give more opportunities and hope to entrepreneurs in sustainable mountain tourism in the selected municipalities," he added, according to local news website agenda.ge

According to the official statement, Tourism Development Initiative (TDI) support per applicant or group of applicants will be granted between €5,000 and €50,000 with the co-financing share at minimum 10% of the total budget. The duration of a project must be at least 6 months and may not exceed 24 months. All TDI activities must have finished by 30 September 2022. Deadline for submission of the application form and supporting document for this call is 03.08.2020, 18:00 Georgia Time, as reported by Georgian Public Broadcasting.

Austrian Ambassador to Georgia Arad Benkö underlined: “Sustainable Mountain Tourism is the priority sector for Austria in cooperation with Georgia, and in the middle of this crisis we see that support to this field has become essential. The objective of the Tourism Development Initiative is to facilitate an improvement of the business environment and create income-generating opportunities in sustainable mountain tourism for reducing poverty and exclusion in the selected mountain areas of Georgia, namely Racha-Lechkhumi, Svaneti and Upper Imereti. Therefore, co-financing opportunities, capacity building and experience sharing, for registered commercial and non-commercial entities and individuals nowadays are one of the most important actions to economic recovery”.

The applicants should fill out the Expression of Interest (EoI) form online [LINK] in Georgian. More detailed information can be found HERE.

Applicants and other interested parts are invited to the Question and Answer sessions in each targeted municipalities with the following agenda:
10.07.2020 – Mestia Municipality Centre/ at 09:30
13.07.2020 – Oni Community Center / at 11:00
14.07.2020 – Ambrolauri Municipal Hall / at 11:00
15.07.2020 – Tsageri Municipality Centre/ at 11:00 and Lentekhi Municipality Centre/ at15:00
16.07.2020 – Tkibuli Municipal Hall / at 11:00
17.07.2020 - Sachkhere Municipal Hall / at 11:00 and Chiatura Municipal Hall / at 15:00

GRETA, a four-year project of Sustainable Mountain Tourism & Organic Agriculture, focuses on the support of Georgian small and medium enterprises to professionalise and scale up. The action will also facilitate an improvement of the business environment and the creation of new income opportunities in the two growth sectors: mountain tourism and organic agriculture. The 6.8 Mio. € project is co-funded by the EU and the two EU member states Sweden and Austria.

Enterprise Georgia is among 6 shortlisted finalists at the WTPO Awards 2020. Read more here.

Author: The FINANCIAL