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ICNL’s resources and information on Georgia.

Flag of Georgia (Graphic Credit: Wikimedia)
Tbilisi, Georgia. Photo credit Kent Tupas on Unsplash

A Second Restrictive Foreign Agents Law Introduced in Georgia

In March 2023, a group of Georgian parliamentarians introduced a draft Law of Georgia “On Registration of Foreign Agents. The drafters claim that they copied the U.S. Foreign Agents Registration Act, but many of the provisions of the Draft Law are either used out of context or completely different from the U.S. law. This ICNL and ECNL briefer provides an overview of the Draft Law and points out its potential impact on the people and businesses of Georgia, its enforcement, as well as how it may significantly undermine the Georgian economy, deterring foreign investment. Find the full analysis here.

draft law of Georgia on transparency of foreign influence photo credit Amanda Anderson - Concert Hall & Presidential Palace Tbilisi Georgia

Draft Law of Georgia on Transparency of Foreign Influence

The recently introduced Draft Law of Georgia on Transparency of Foreign Influence has drawn profound concern from international and Georgian organizations. If passed, it would substantially weaken civil society and independent media, which are crucial to preserving democracy in Georgia. At the request of local partners, ICNL and ECNL prepared an analysis of the draft law’s compliance with international law and European standards. Our analysis shows that many of the draft law provisions do not comply with Georgia’s obligations under international law or EU standards. Find the full analysis here or a summary of our findings here.

A sunset over Tbilisi, Georgia. (Photo: Vladimer Shioshvili/CC)

Legal Environment for Financial Sustainability in Georgia

Civil society organizations must understand the legislation affecting their income in order to advocate for access to resources and ensure financial sustainability. To help organizations build this understanding in Georgia, the USAID Civil Society Engagement Program (CSEP), implemented by the East-West Management Institute, Inc., ICNL, and ECNL, assessed the legal environment for civil society financial sustainability and corporate and individual philanthropy. The key areas addressed in the assessment include regulations related to donations and income, philanthropy, fundraising methods, and more. The report also identifies several challenges organizations face and provides recommendations for addressing them. Download the report here (available in Russian and English).

Tbilisi cityscapes with a cable car. (Photo: Katarzyna Javaheri-Szpak/WikiMedia)

Guidelines for Activists Relocating to Georgia

These guidelines, put together by the Civil Society Institute (CSI) with the support of ICNL, are designed to help activists from Belarus and other Eurasian countries who relocate to Georgia ensure compliance with Georgian law. They cover a broad range of legal issues, from obtaining legalization in Georgia to work permits, rules for working as an individual or as a nonprofit, taxation, rules for receiving foreign grants, procedures for opening bank accounts, required reports to the government, and licensing for specific activities, and more. Download the report here (Russian and English available).

Civil Society Organization Sustainability Index

The index, funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development for twenty years, documents the development of civil society in seventy-one countries around the world, including Georgia. ICNL and FHI 360 work with local partners to produce the index annually.