UNDP is here for Georgia, Helen Clark says
TBILISI. 19 February 2011 – Head of the United Nations Development Programme wraps up her three-day visit to Georgia.
At the invitation of the Georgian Patriarchy UNDP Administrator Helen Clark visited the Catholicos-Patriarch of All Georgia Ilia II in his Mtskheta residence. At the end of the day, she also met the President of Georgia, Mikheil Saakashvili.
“This is an exciting time for Georgia”, said Helen Clark at the end of her three-day visit. “But democratic transformation is never easy, it takes time and effort. UNDP will support the government and people of Georgia through this challenging process.”
The UNDP Administrator, Helen Clark, and the Assistant Administrator, Director of the UNDP Regional Bureau for Europe and CIS, Ayşe Cihan Sultanoğlu, had fruitful discussions with a wide range of ministers and other government representatives including the Prime Minister of Georgia, Bidzina Ivanishvili, and the Parliament Speaker, David Usupashvili. They also saw the Minister of Justice, Tea Tsulukiani; the Minister of Foreign Affairs Maia Panjikidze; and the State Minister for Reintegration, Paata Zakareishvili.
“UNDP will continue its assistance to Georgia in the areas of democratic governance, justice reform, economic development and public administration reform,” Helen Clark said at the joint press conference with Georgian Prime Minister.
“There are many areas where we can build on our strong partnership and help develop opportunities for further human development in Georgia,” she said.
The UNDP Administrator also had meetings with representatives of the leading civil society organizations and with women politicians.
“I was pleased to learn that the number of women MPs in the Georgian parliament has almost doubled from 6 to 11 per cent. But there is still a long way to go. The empowerment of women must lie at the heart of development if it is to be sustainable,” Helen Clark said.
On 17 February, together with Minister of Agriculture David Kirvalidze and Vice Prime Minister of Georgia, Minister of Education and Science Giorgi Margvelashvili, Helen Clark visited a UNDP-supported vocational school in Kachreti.
The UNDP Head talked to students and teachers of vocational courses and attended practical training for agriculture machinery operators. She visited a newly opened demonstration farm and met a local Association of Women Farmers.
Helen Clark became the Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme in 2009 and is the first woman to lead the organization. Before that she served three terms as Prime Minister of New Zealand.
Sophie Tchitchinadze, UNDP Georgia, +995 599 196907 (mobile), email@example.com