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    Posted March 13, 2014 by
    Tbilisi, Georgia

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    PM Irakli Garibashvili: “I Want the Population to Realize the Full Importance of Khudoni HPP”

    Georgia’s PM Irakli Garibashvili was asked a series of questions regarding the Khudoni HPP project during his meeting with students. The questions revolved around the threat similar projects pose to cultural landmarks, as well as potential negative effects they may have on local climate. The planned project, which will be a major forward step in the energy business for Georgia, faces certain controversy since it will cause a Svanetian village to be flooded and its population relocated.

    “We should not confuse the population about the gigantic dam destroying Svanetian culture. No one is planning on destroying it – Svaneti is not facing this type of danger,” stated Garibashvili when asked about the project’s influence on the region’s environment. “I’ll be the first defender of Svaneti’s culture, I’ll be one of the first to defend diversity – but you have incorrect information. We must take every citizen’s stance and opinion into account, never will the government make decisions against the will of our residents. Opinionated parties have to be correlated, we must adequately explain what the project’s construction will mean to the country, to its development and energy independence. And if after all this they still oppose the plant construction and are backed with strong arguments, I will absolutely take it into account.”

    The PM noted that current arguments regarding the project’s negative effects on the environment were loose and aimed at misinforming the listeners, and that researches and facts from people competent in these matters hold priority.

    “The investor company, the Ministry of Energy, they’re also bound to address these questions along with us, the government. I’m personally motivated and not at all disinterested in this issue, it’s quite the opposite. I never do and have never done anything against our population,” concluded Garibashvili.
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