SmartVille Portal for Improving Local Business Environment – the Tetritskaro LAG with the Support of the RDFG Launches a New Project

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The Tetritskaro Local Action Group (LAG) launches a new project SmartVille that is based on the Association Rural Development for Future Georgia’s (RDFG) model of the smart village portal.

The SmartVille project aims to improve the local business environment including access to financial literacy learning engines and finding the source, tourism-related value chains through their inclusion in information management systems and regional networks across Georgia with further expansion to Eastern Partnership and EU countries. The project is funded by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) under the European Neighborhood Programme for Agriculture and Rural Development in Georgia – ENPARD III.

The specific objective of the project is to promote sustainable rural development in the Tetritskaro municipality through a diversified rural economy, improved access to the market and introduction of ICT technologies and balanced, participative, and inclusive development strategy. The mentioned approach fits under the European Union funded project “Rural Development for Sustainable Growth of Tetritskaro Municipality” carried out through the second phase of the European Neighborhood Programme for Agriculture and Rural Development (ENPARD II) by the RDFG and will be complementary to the ongoing implementation of the Local Development Strategy (LDS) of the Tetritskaro Municipality 2018 – 2022 based on the core principles of the European Union’s LEADER methodology.

Within the project, the SmartVille portal will be developed which will bring together information about agricultural markets linked to local agri portals and hospitality/booking sites. It will provide information on EU/national regulations on customs and standards of production, food safety management systems/standards, learning materials for SMEs and best practices on value chain, private-public partnerships, application of ICTs, etc.

First, focus group discussions will be held with local SMEs, government and CSOs to ensure in-depth learning of existing challenges and their vision for change. Then, the collected information will be analyzed, the areas for addressing will be defined and discussed back with these community representatives for necessary adjustments. Afterwards, the online platform SmartVille will be built based on these revealed areas.

All activities in the Tetritskaro municipality and overall management of the project will be carried out by the Tetritskaro LAG in partnership with the RDFG. The action also considers cooperation with financial institutions, LAG LEADER networking, involvement in Smart Village networks, Georgian Association of Local Action Groups (GALAG), and Lithuanian Local Action Group Network.

Tetritskaro Local Action Group (LAG) was established with the support of the EU-funded ENPARD project “Rural Development for Sustainable Growth in the Tetritskaro Municipality” implemented by the Association Rural Development for Future Georgia (RDFG). It is one of the twelve LAGs established with the EU support in different municipalities across the country. The LAG serves as a multisectoral cooperation platform and brings together civil society, private and public sectors to promote the local development process in the municipality. The Tetritskaro LAG, with a membership of 89 Tetritskaro residents, represents 20 local communities, including national and religious minorities, as well as IDPs and eco-migrants residing in the Tetritskaro municipality.

Nina Kopaleishvili – RDFG Communications Officer;
Nino Tikurishvili – Tetritskaro LAG Executive Director