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Facilitating the Reform of Economic Instruments for Water Management in Georgia

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This study assesses the use of economic instruments for water resources management in Georgia and considers options for reform following the 2014 signature of an Association Agreement with the EU committing to alignment with the EU’s Water Framework Directive. This includes the systematic use of economic instruments, including water pricing, to recover the cost of water services provided to households, industry and farmers, among other measures.

Three main economic instruments are recommended in this study: 1) the introduction of a licensing regime and charges for both surface water and groundwater abstraction, 2) the restoration of a licencing and charging regime for all forms of water pollution, and 3) more rigorous enforcement of these measures, including more active monitoring and higher fines for offenders. Implementing these measures will be greatly facilitated by the enactment of the new Water Law now being examined by the government of Georgia.

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Executive summary

Georgia is well endowed with water resources and has no overall water scarcity. However, there is unsustainable abstraction of groundwater and surface water in a number of localities. Water variability, in the form of flooding and the occurrence of local and seasonal shortages, is a serious problem in many regions. There is an urgent need of better water resources management. This will require better and more systematic funding of these activities.

English

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