The Government of Georgia will cut in the 2013 budget the amounts provided for the funding and maintenance of the president and his administration. This was announced by Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili after the meeting of the Government of Georgia on November 2.
“We will drastically reduce the funding of the presidential administration, since its service, including utilities, require too much money. Annually 800,000 lari are spent for the President’s Palace power supply alone. Huge sums were spent to build the same palace. We do not know the exact figures so far, they are under examination, however it is amoral when in the country where so many poor people live, on Saakashvili who extended his authority (Saakashvili’s 5 year presidential term expires on January 5, 2013, and presidential elections under the Constitution, which at the end of last year was amended, will be held in October 2013), too much money are wasted,” said the Prime Minister and stressed that the state budget will not fund unnecessary expenses of the president.
Moreover, 800 thousand lari per month are allocated from the budget of the Ministry of Defense to serve one of the president’s planes. According to Defence Minister Irakli Alasania, annually for this purpose more than 80 million lari are spent, and this funding will be stopped too, all the more so several aircrafts serve the President Saakashvili.
Since the new Georgian government considers the service of the president’s Avlabar palace inappropriate, Bidzina Ivanishvili offered Saakashvili to move to the president’s office located on the 11th floor of the state office, and to continue his work there. “This will significantly reduce the state budget expenditures,” said the Prime Minister.
The funds released from such savings will be used to address the problems of refugees, and to finance priority areas such as agriculture, health, and education.