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Estonia Sharing Experiences in Starting Businesses with Georgian IDPs


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With the support of the Foreign Ministry a training programme for young Georgian internally displaced persons (IDPs) will begin in November, within the framework of which they will learn about Estonia’s experiences regarding starting businesses.

Foreign Minister Urmas Paet stated that Estonia would like to help improve the situation of Georgian IDPs. “Knowledge about starting up a business will offer the Georgian IDPs a chance to find work and return to their normal everyday lives. Frequently people know how to create a product or provide a service, but they lack the knowledge needed to start a business,” stated Foreign Minister Paet. “The project will also help promote contacts between Estonian and Georgian entrepreneurs as well as co-operation,” he added.

During the project of the Harju Economic Development Centre, Estonian experts will share experiences related to starting a business with young Georgian IDPs. Three training sessions for young Georgian refugees on the topic of starting a business will take place during the run of the project. After the training the young Georgians will have the opportunity to come to Estonia and become acquainted with how the support system for businesses works here. They will also meet with Estonian entrepreneurs who wish to find business partners in Georgia, thereby enlivening business contacts between the two countries.

There are about 17 000 people in Georgia who were forced to leave their homes after the Russia-Georgia conflict in August 2008 and go to live in displaced persons camps. According to World Bank data, unemployment in the DP camps is significantly higher than in the rest of the country, as the people in them were forced to leave their prior homes and workplaces.

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