Mamuka Bakhtadze: Georgian and European cultures are clearly identical because we have common cultural values and a hierarchy of values Print Version

2019-05-06

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Georgia is an integral part of Europe's cultural environment, and our country has always been and will remain its organic and harmonious constituent, Georgian Prime Minister Mamuka Bakhtadze stated in his speech at the opening ceremony of the Georgia, Europe project.

The Head of Government spoke about Georgia's original ancient culture and traditions, which define the country's uniqueness.

"Our diverse history has been forging Georgian culture for centuries to ensure our robust national uniqueness and to promote Georgia's distinctive culture. Equally unique is our geographic location on the crossroads of Europe and Asia, between which Georgia, for centuries, has served as a bridge. It is apparent to the naked eye, to every visitor of our country, that Georgian and European cultures are identical, because we share a common foundation, common cultural values and a hierarchy of values. That is exactly why I emphasize that the choice of the Georgian people to become a full member of the European family is a civilizational choice, not just a political one," Mamuka Bakhtadze said.

The large-scale Georgia, Europe project started with the international forum Connecting Cultures-Shaping a Creative Future for Georgia and Europe. The Prime Minister is convinced that the forum will mark the beginning of a series of dialogues bringing together different European cultures and showcasing the role of Georgian culture in the diversity of European cultures. In line with the Prime Minister's instructions, the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sport will continue taking active steps in this direction, and the Georgia, Europe campaign will become a traditional, regular event.

According to Mamuka Bakhtadze, more must be said and done to make known that Georgia is an integral part of Europe's cultural environment, and forums of this kind will play a vital role in cementing this philosophy.

"In 2018, Georgia was Guest of Honor at the Frankfurt Book Fair, where our culture was successfully displayed. For years, Georgian authors have been participating in numerous international literary gatherings, including in London and Leipzig. Our national pavilion is secured at the Venice International Art Fair as well. Similarly, annual screenings of Georgian films are held at different reputable film festivals in Cannes, Berlin, Locarno, San Sebastian, and others. I am especially proud because, in 2021, Georgia will host the Forum of the Cultural Routes of the Council of Europe, also the famous Europalia international art festival in 2022. Also in 2022, Georgia will also participate in Paris Book Fair as Guest of Honor. We are especially excited about the success of our fellow citizens abroad. Our artists have long taken a special place in global arts. Georgian representatives of opera, ballet, visual arts, and performance arts have garnered much success. Georgia is the first Eastern Partnership state to be part of the Creative Europe program since 2015. When it comes international cultural dimensions, Georgia has immense potential for developing festival and cultural tourism and creative economy. Our primary goal is to enhance the country's international visibility, deepen cultural dialogue, and promote the country's European and Euro-Atlantic integration," the Prime Minister emphasized.

The audience at the forum was also addressed by Georgian President Salome Zurabishvili, Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sport Mikheil Batiashvili, EU Ambassador Carl Hartzell, and UNESCO Artist for Peace Elisso Bolkvadze.

The large-scale Georgia, Europe project, initiated and organized by the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sport, is implemented with support from the Government of Georgia. The project's primary goal is to enhance the image of Georgia as a country with an ancient culture and traditions, to support the European integration of the country as a reliable and strong partner in the international arena. The project involves the joint implementation of cultural programs in cooperation with partner countries and international organizations and foundations. Under the program, numerous cultural and educational events will be held throughout the country in the course of a year, including festivals, international exhibitions, concerts, and others.

 

Prime Minister's Press Office