China, Georgia Sign Preliminary Trade Pact
China and Georgia on Wednesday signed a preliminary free trade agreement that is expected to take effect from the end of 2017.
The deal is expected to see Chinese firms building ports and railways in Georgia, and will boost Georgian wine exports to the world's number two economy, according to a statement posted on the website of China's commerce ministry.
The Ministry of Commerce has deepened the trade and economic cooperation with countries along the “belt and road” through mechanism like bilateral trade, and apart from the Georgia agreement it has launched the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and the China-Belarus Industrial Park.
In the first half of 2016, China’s trade value with countries along the “belt and road” amounted to $446.1 billion. The number of trade and economic cooperation zones invested by China in relevant countries reached 52 this year, with a combined investment of $15.6 billion.
Georgia, with a population of 3.7 million, has deposits of minerals such as copper and manganese.
China is Georgia's fourth-largest trade partner and its second-biggest importer of wine, according to the statement.