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Georgia

Development of a Guidebook for Economic Agents (GE0060)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Georgia National Action Plan 2016-2018

Action Plan Cycle: 2016

Status: Inactive

Institutions

Lead Institution: LELP–Competition Agency

Support Institution(s): NA

Policy Areas

Capacity Building, E-Government, Fiscal Transparency, Legislation & Regulation, Private Sector, Public Service Delivery

IRM Review

IRM Report: Georgia End-of-Term Report 2016-2018, Georgia Mid-Term Report 2016-2018

Starred: No

Early Results: Marginal

Design i

Verifiable: Yes

Relevant to OGP Values: Access to Information

Potential Impact:

Implementation i

Completion:

Description

Development of a Guidebook for Economic Agents; Economic agents who apply only the Law on Competition and the normative acts based on it do not have relevant information about the application of legislation on competition. In addition, the society does not have sufficient information on the newly established Competition Agency. The communication between the control organ and relevant business entity is necessary so that an economic agent can be informed on their commitments derived from the Law on Competition. As a result, the work of the agency will become more efficient, and entities on their part, will take relevant measures to minimize activities interfering the free competitive market. The commitment serves to improve transparency and accountability principles of the public administration. The Competition Agency will develop a guidebook/brochure, the main topic of which will be problematic and urgent issues of the Law on Competition and key action principles of the agency. The guidebook will be distributed both in a print version and electronically to inform businesses and society about the competition matters. Date ofImplementation: 2016-2017; Issues to be Addressed: Economic agents do not have enough information on application of the Law on Competition that complicates the process of law execution. Main Objective: Increase awareness of economic agents and simplify the execution of the Law on Competition.

IRM End of Term Status Summary

19. Development of a guidebook for economic agents

Commitment Text:

Economic agents who apply only the Law on Competition and the normative acts based on it do not have relevant information about the application of legislation on competition. In addition, the society does not have sufficient information on the newly established Competition Agency.

The communication between the control organ and relevant business entity is necessary so that an economic agent can be informed on their commitments derived from the Law on Competition. As a result, the work of the agency will become more efficient, and entities on their part, will take relevant measures to minimize activities interfering the free competitive market.

The commitment serves to improve transparency and accountability principles of the public administration. The Competition Agency will develop a guidebook/brochure, the main topic of which will be problematic and urgent issues of the Law on Competition and key action principles of the agency. The guidebook will be distributed both in a print version and electronically to inform businesses and society about the competition matters.

Responsible institution: LEPL – Competition Agency

Supporting institution(s): None

Start date: September 2016 End date: December 2017

Commitment Aim:

To prevent violation of the Law of Georgia on Competition adopted in March 2014, and thus, to maintain competition among market players, the LEPL Competition Agency committed to instruct economic agents on regulations by drafting a Guidebook for Economic Agents. The commitment consisted of two main steps: 1) developing the Guidebook; and 2) disseminating information regarding the document. The Guidebook would serve as instruction manual for the private sector on existing norms, by translating legal norms into more accessible and understandable language, with the aim to improve compliance with the Competition Law.

Status

Midterm: Substantial

By the midterm, the commitment was substantially implemented. The Competition Agency adopted the Guidebook for Economic Agents in May 2017, which defines what an economic agent is, discusses possible scenarios where a market player might violate competition standards (e.g., abuse of a dominant position in the market, predatory pricing, price discrimination, and/or refusal to supply), and referred to rulings by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU).

The Agency had yet to conduct dissemination activities. According to Agency representatives, awareness-raising activities were planned for the Fall of 2017, including a conference for the business community where the Guidebook would be disseminated. For more information, please see the 2016–2017 IRM midterm report. [93] 

End of term: Complete

After the midterm, the Competition Agency met with various stakeholders to disseminate the Guidebook including media representatives in the Summer of 2017 (25 participants in total), business representatives in the Fall of 2017, and events like the International Competition Conference and World Competition Day. The Agency also trained 30 judges three courts and discussed the Guidebook with these judges. Hard copies of the Guidebook were distributed during Competition Agency events, as well as electronic copies specifically directed at individuals actively working in market competition. [94] The Agency planned another meeting with journalists in December 2018. [95]

Did It Open Government?

Access to Information: Marginal

The Guidebook for Economic Agents was adopted and disseminated as planned, clarifying violations of competition standards. The Guidebook defines what an economic agent is and describes various scenarios which might constitute a violation of competition standards. Theoretical discussion is supplemented by rulings of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU). The Guidebook is illustrated and easy to understand for an untrained reader.

The improvement in terms of enhancing access to information is marginal. According to a representative of an insurance company actively collaborating with the Competition Agency, explaining provisions in the Law on Competition to non-lawyers is challenging, which is why he and colleagues in other insurance firms find the Guidebook to be helpful in explaining regulations to their clients. Based on his feedback, all active insurance firms employ the Guidebook in their daily work. [96] Similarly, the Chair of the Commercial and Competition Law Committee of the Georgian Bar Association positively assesses the Guidebook, and stresses that the document was helpful in designing training modules for lawyers. While lawyers have no difficulty interpreting the Law on Competition, the simplicity of the Guidebook and its accompanying visualizations serve as a backbone for their training on competition regulations aimed at raising awareness regarding the existing legal framework.

Carried Forward?

The commitment was not carried into the new Action Plan 2018−2019.

[93] Lasha Gogidze and Tamar Gzirishvili, Independent Reporting Mechanism (IRM): Georgia Progress Report 2016-2017 (OGP, 30 Apr. 2018), https://bit.ly/2NIr097.

[94] Mari Nikabidze (Chair of the Commercial and Competition Law Committee of the Georgian Bar Association), phone interview with IRM researcher, 28 Dec. 2018.

[95] Sopo Momtselidze (Head of the Legal Department, Competition Agency) interview with IRM researcher, 10 Oct. 2018.

[96] Vakhtang Shurghaia (Head of the Legal Department at the Insurance Company “Unison” and Executive Secretary at the NNLE “Insurance Network”), phone interview with IRM researcher, 26 Dec. 2018.


Commitments

  1. Improved Public Services

    GE0066, 2018, Capacity Building

  2. Citizen Engagement Platform

    GE0067, 2018, Capacity Building

  3. Unified Authentication System

    GE0068, 2018, E-Government

  4. Economic Governance

    GE0069, 2018, E-Government

  5. Environment Portal

    GE0070, 2018, E-Government

  6. Strengthen Anti-Corruption Institutions

    GE0071, 2018, Anti-Corruption Institutions

  7. Monitor SDGs

    GE0072, 2018, Capacity Building

  8. Citizen Engagement Legislation

    GE0073, 2018, Legislation & Regulation

  9. Publish Court Decisions

    GE0074, 2018, E-Government

  10. Increasing Transparency of the Ministry of Internal Affairs

    GE0075, 2018, E-Government

  11. Citizen Participation in Public Finance

    GE0076, 2018, Audits and Controls

  12. Transparent Public Funding System

    GE0077, 2018, Fiscal Transparency

  13. Public Procurement Improvements

    GE0078, 2018, E-Government

  14. Housing Policy Planning

    GE0079, 2018, Land & Spatial Planning

  15. Openness and Accountability of State-Owned Enterprises

    GE0080, 2018, E-Government

  16. Transparency and Good Governance

    GE0081, 2018, Legislation & Regulation

  17. Open Data Collection and Publication

    GE0082, 2018, E-Government

  18. Participation for Disabled Individuals

    GE0083, 2018, Infrastructure & Transport

  19. Participatory Budgeting

    GE0084, 2018, Capacity Building

  20. Your Idea for the Zugdidi Mayor

    GE0085, 2018, Capacity Building

  21. Electronic Services

    GE0086, 2018, E-Government

  22. I. Gov. Zugdidi

    GE0087, 2018, Capacity Building

  23. Service and Citizen Satisfaction Assessment

    GE0088, 2018, Capacity Building

  24. Promoting and Monitoring SDGs

    GE0089, 2018, Legislature

  25. Citizen Involvement in Budget

    GE0090, 2018, E-Government

  26. Technology for Transparency

    GE0091, 2018, E-Government

  27. Citizen Engagement Center

    GE0092, 2018, Capacity Building

  28. Raising Public Awareness About Parliamentary Democracy

    GE0093, 2018, E-Government

  29. Electronic Innovations for More Transparency and Efficiency of Public Procurement

    GE0056, 2016, Capacity Building

  30. Starred commitment Adoption of the Environmental Assessment Code

    GE0057, 2016, Capacity Building

  31. Introduction of a Mobile App as an Alternative Channel to Connect to “112”

    GE0058, 2016, E-Government

  32. Development of Local Councils for Crime Prevention

    GE0059, 2016, Public Service Delivery

  33. Development of a Guidebook for Economic Agents

    GE0060, 2016, Capacity Building

  34. Development and Introduction of the Quality Control Program of Commercial Service

    GE0061, 2016, Capacity Building

  35. Presentation of Company Reports in an Electronic Form and Provision of Their Accessibility

    GE0062, 2016, Capacity Building

  36. Introduction of an Electronic Petition Portal and “Zugdidi-INFO” on the Webpage of Zugdidi Municipality Assembly

    GE0063, 2016, Capacity Building

  37. Transparency of Ozurgeti Municipality Assembly Meetings

    GE0064, 2016, Capacity Building

  38. Creation of Electronic Mechanism for Local Budget Planning in Kutaisi, Ozurgeti, Batumi and Akhaltsikhe

    GE0065, 2016, E-Government

  39. Adapting the Public Service Hall to the Needs of the People with Disabilities

    GE0042, 2016, Capacity Building

  40. Launch of the Unified Healthcare System Information Portal

    GE0043, 2016, Capacity Building

  41. Introduction of Electronic Licensing System in the Field of Natural Resources Application

    GE0044, 2016, Capacity Building

  42. Creation of Spatial (Geographic) Data Web-Portal for the Energy Sector

    GE0045, 2016, Capacity Building

  43. Creation of Innovation Ecosystem

    GE0046, 2016, Capacity Building

  44. Electronic Portal for Registering and Disposal of State Property – Customer’S Module

    GE0047, 2016, E-Government

  45. Development of the Freedom of Information Law

    GE0048, 2016, Legislation & Regulation

  46. Development of a Monitoring and Assessment System of the Government Policy and Legislative Acts

    GE0049, 2016, Capacity Building

  47. Starred commitment Introduction of the Public Officials’ Asset Declarations Monitoring System

    GE0050, 2016, Anti-Corruption Institutions

  48. Establishing Unified Regulations to Publish Court Decisions

    GE0051, 2016, Judiciary

  49. Development of Transparency and Integrity Strategy and Action Plan in the Field of Regional Development and Infrastructure

    GE0052, 2016, Capacity Building

  50. Improvement of the Database of the Convicted and Transfer of the Penitentiary Department Entirely Onto the Electronic Workflow Management

    GE0053, 2016, Capacity Building

  51. Publication of Phone Tapping Data According to the Nature of the Crime and Geographic Area

    GE0054, 2016, E-Government

  52. Starred commitment Increasing Citizen Participation in Supervision of Public Finances (Public Audit)

    GE0055, 2016, Capacity Building

  53. "Voice of the Consumer"

    GE0013, 2014, Public Participation

  54. JUSTdrive

    GE0014, 2014, Public Service Delivery

  55. Educational Services

    GE0015, 2014, Public Service Delivery

  56. Citizen's Portal (Www.Mygov.Ge)

    GE0016, 2014, Capacity Building

  57. Transformation of Public Libraries for Regional Development

    GE0017, 2014, Capacity Building

  58. Digital Signature and Online Authentication

    GE0018, 2014, E-Government

  59. Open Data Portal (Data.Gov.Ge)

    GE0019, 2014, E-Government

  60. Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Draft

    GE0020, 2014, Legislation & Regulation

  61. Georgia's OGP Forum

    GE0021, 2014, OGP

  62. I-Change.Ge

    GE0022, 2014, E-Government

  63. Transparency of Public Service Recruitment

    GE0023, 2014, E-Government

  64. Asset Declaration Monitoring System

    GE0024, 2014, Anti-Corruption Institutions

  65. Starred commitment Political Party Financial Declarations

    GE0025, 2014, E-Government

  66. Accessibility of Ministry of Interior's Webpage to People with Special Needs

    GE0026, 2014, E-Government

  67. Starred commitment Proactive Publishing of Surveillance Data

    GE0027, 2014, Civic Space

  68. Public Awareness of the Electoral Process

    GE0028, 2014, Capacity Building

  69. Transparency of Budgetary Processes

    GE0029, 2014, E-Government

  70. Electronic System of Procurement

    GE0030, 2014, E-Government

  71. Digital Human Resource Management System

    GE0031, 2014, E-Government

  72. Digital Preservation System: E-Archive

    GE0032, 2014, E-Government

  73. Openness and Accessibility of National Archives

    GE0033, 2014, E-Government

  74. Electronic Catalogues of Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) Archives

    GE0034, 2014, E-Government

  75. Public Finance Management System

    GE0035, 2014, E-Government

  76. Alternative Channels to "112"

    GE0036, 2014, E-Government

  77. Interactive Statistics and Crime Mapping

    GE0037, 2014, E-Government

  78. Travel Insurance Services

    GE0038, 2014, Citizenship and Immigration

  79. State Property Registration

    GE0039, 2014, Public Service Delivery

  80. Development of Community Centers in Georgia

    GE0040, 2014, E-Government

  81. Introduction of e-Governance in Local Self-Governments

    GE0041, 2014, E-Government

  82. Public Service Hall-Hub of Public Services

    GE0001, 2012, Citizenship and Immigration

  83. e-Governance in Local Governments

    GE0002, 2012, E-Government

  84. Citizens’ Portal

    GE0003, 2012, E-Government

  85. Easily Accessible and Better Healthcare

    GE0004, 2012, E-Government

  86. Launch Ichange.Ge and Data.Gov.Ge

    GE0005, 2012, E-Government

  87. Platform for Participating in the Legislative Process

    GE0006, 2012, E-Government

  88. Citizens and Justice

    GE0007, 2012, Judiciary

  89. Starred commitment Transparent Party Financing

    GE0008, 2012, Money in Politics

  90. Home-Grown Concept of E-Procurement

    GE0009, 2012, E-Government

  91. e-Declarations

    GE0010, 2012, Asset Disclosure

  92. Technology Cares for Safety: ICCMS, Crime Mapping, and Safety in Your Neighbourhood

    GE0011, 2012, E-Government

  93. NGO Forum

    GE0012, 2012, Capacity Building