Georgian Parliament approves controversial law on "foreign agents" in final reading

Tuesday, 14 May 2024

In its third and final reading, Georgia's Parliament passed the bill "On Transparency of Foreign Influence," which sparked widespread protests.

As reported by Georgian First Channel, the law was passed in its third reading at today's plenary session.

116 MPs were registered. 84 parliamentarians backed the bill, and 30 voted against it.

The bill allows non-business (non-commercial) legal bodies and the media to be registered as "organisations that carry out the interests of foreign forces", if they get more than 20% of their income from outside of Georgia.


According to the bill, anybody who is regarded as an "organisation that carries out the interests of a foreign force" must be listed in the state register and the database of the same name. The income received must be reported upon registration.

Organisations will be required to submit a financial disclosure each year. The bill enables the Ministry of Justice to conduct research and study-monitoring of the subject at any time in order to identify "an organisation that carries out the interests of a foreign force".

Failure to register as a "organisation that carries out the interests of a foreign force" or to submit a declaration results in a fine.

Georgian President Salome Zurabishvili stated that she will veto the law On the Transparency of Foreign Influence.

Prime Minister Irakli Kobakhidze stated that if precise legal comments are submitted, conversations will begin, and the ruling party is willing to negotiate under the veto.

On the morning of 13 May, the Georgian parliament's legal committee quickly agreed on a draft law on "foreign agents" prior to the third reading. Previously, on May 11, Tbilisi hosted the largest march against the law's approval, with tens of thousands of people taking to the streets.

Meanwhile, 12 EU ministers asked the European Commission to urgently explain the consequences of the adoption of the law on "foreign agents" for the European integration of Georgia. 

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