Last year, the European Union finally decided to allow Georgians to travel to the EU visa free. Many Georgians like to joke that the current generation, unlike their parents, take weekend getaways in Berlin, not Moscow. Yet in reality, many young Georgians cannot afford to leave the country as they are faced with economic and social hardships.
Georgia's geographical position between Asia and Europe is both an advantage and a challenge for the country. After the collapse of the Soviet Union and the restoration of independence, the country had gone through war and devastation; it lost 20 per cent of its territory and currently struggles to find a development path with the threat of Russian intervention. Yet, as local political leaders like to repeat, Georgia has made its civilisational choice.
Tbilisi is confident the European model of democracy, and the Euro-Atlantic security system, will help preserve the country's stability and sovereignty. Despite the open aggression of Russia, which does not want to lose its sphere of influence in the South Caucasus, Georgian officials actively co-operate with the EU and dream of one day becoming a NATO member. Like their peers in the West, young people in Georgia struggle to make a start in life, but they also hope for a brighter future.
January 2, 2018 -