The President of Georgia addressed the 78th session of the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific.
“A new global crisis has erupted. Russia’s military aggression in Ukraine has resulted in the loss of thousands of lives, destruction of urban centers and large segments of the economy, displacement of millions of people.
The negative effects and delays go beyond Ukraine, affecting the growth of many members of the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific. Neglecting the principles and norms of international law, in particular respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity or inviolability of borders, directly contradict the achievements of the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.
The energy and land infrastructure that used to act as a bridge between Europe and Central Asia is falling apart. The consequences of disruption of food and other supply chains are also noteworthy.
We already know that this will lead to an increase in poverty and inequality and will undermine the Sustainable Development Goals. This only underscores the need for decisive action to end the war as quickly as possible. The war also underscores the need for rapid development of alternative transport systems to maintain supply chains between Europe and Asia. Despite the challenges in its neighborhood, Georgia, as a bridge between Europe and Asia due to its geographical location and a country on the old Silk Road, is engaged in intensive cooperation with the Asia-Pacific region to develop new energy, transport and communications projects.
The geopolitical context further reinforces Georgia’s role as a gateway to Asia and as an essential transit-logistics hub, an essential link for the movement of goods through the canal that connects the Black Sea, the Caucasus and the Eurasian continent.
As we have a new historic achievement on the road to European integration, Georgia is seeking to develop its ties with Asian economies, in particular through free trade agreements and increased cooperation”, - said Salome Zourabichvili.