Welcome to

Rural Development Conference of Georgia 2023

“EU and Georgia Working Together for Sustainable Rural Development“


The Conference aims to stimulate cooperation on agriculture and rural development policy alignment process with the EU, the corresponding institutional framework and its application in the Georgian context.

The Conference is hosted by the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Agriculture of Georgia, funded by the European Union, and organized in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme.


Expo Georgia – Exhibition Center – 3rd Pavilion
118 Tsereteli Ave. Tbilisi


09:00 – 17:30
28 November, 2023



Krzysztof Sulima
Brigitte Mehlmauer-Larcher
Goran Živkov
Salvatore Carfi
Ivica Janeski
Indulis Āboliņš


Natia Gogrichiani, Ministry of Environmental Protection and Agriculture of Georgia
Tel: +995 591 001 005
Email: natia.gogrichiani@mepa.gov.ge

Ketevan Metreveli, UNDP Georgia, Project Support to Rural Development in Georgia
Tel: +995 599 551 014
Email: ketevan.metreveli@undp.org


Nana Chinchilakashvili, Ministry of Environment Protection and Agriculture of Georgia
Tel: +995 599 502 619
Email: nana.chinchilakashvili@mepa.gov.ge

Sophie Tchitchinadze, UNDP in Georgia
Tel: +995 599 196 907
Email: sophie.tchitchinadze@undp.org

Krzysztof Sulima

Krzysztof Sulima joined the European Commission after completing his studies in the fields of international relations and European politics and policies. He first worked in the Directorate for Environment from where he moved to the Directorate for Agriculture and Rural Development to focus on the aspects of the EU rural development policy. He now continues working in this Directorate in the Neighbourhood, Enlargement and Pre-Accession assistance unit responsible also for IPARD (instrument for pre-accession assistance for rural development).

Thanks to these professional experiences, Krzysztof has gained a valuable insight into different perspectives of shaping the Common Agricultural Policy (the CAP) and in particular on the aspects of integration of environmental concerns into this policy. His work on this integration has been reflected in developing agri-environment-climate relevant instruments as well as in setting workable solutions to the interactions between those instruments and the CAP mandatory requirements of cross-compliance and greening requirements, also in the context of the European Green Deal.

Brigitte Mehlmauer-Larcher

Brigitte Mehlmauer-Larcher has been working in the field of regional and specifically rural development since Austria has prepared for its EU membership in year 1995. Since more than 20 years she has supported the design and implementation of the rural development policies in several new EU Member States and in the current EU acceding countries of the West Balkan under IPARD.

From 2017 to 2020 she supported the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Agricultural of Georgia under UNDP Project “Improving Rural Development in Georgia” to develop the Georgian rural development policy. She has also contributed to the institutional capacity building as regards its implementation. Throughout her professional career, she has intensively worked for the EU LEADER approach.

Goran Živkov

Goran Živkov is a former Assistant Minister and Minister of Agriculture of Serbia. He is an international consultant with extensive experience in policy making and strategy planning in agriculture and rural development. He has provided institutional technical assistance in the Western Balkans, CIS, and other countries for various organizations, such as FAO, the World Bank, IFC, UNDP, and the EU. He has also acted as the main Serbian negotiator with the EU and WTO in the field of agriculture. His specializations include agricultural policy, value chain development, and agricultural financing. Goran is the owner of SEEDEV consultancy, Founder of the Centre for Rural Development and Agriculture – Agrikultura, and Member of the Board of Directors of ProCredit Bank, Serbia. He holds an MSc in Agronomy from the University of Belgrade.

Salvatore Carfi

Salvatore Carfì has agro-economist skills with over 25 years’ experience in agricultural administration and institutional reform in the EU, candidate countries and the Neighbourhood region.

He is member of the Expert Group for the European Agricultural Guarantee Fund (EAGF) and for the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) in the financial and complementary controls system of the Integrated Administration Control System (IACS) coordinated by the DG AGRI of the European Commission. During the last 15 years Mr. Carfì has participated as team leader and key expert for implementing and Eu accreditation of the European Paying Agencies, IACS/Land Parcel Identification system, Direct Payments and for analysing of the draft legal acts of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP).

He was Coordinator of the EU New IACS Vision in Action (NIVA) and Open IACS projects and Copernicus management and monitoring Earth Observation (EO) in the agriculture policy topic and during the last years he also was Italian Coordinator for ESA project SEN4CAP - http://esa-sen4cap.org/content/pilot- countries.

In the current work position Mr. Carfì Salvatore is appointed as Director of the AGEA Italian coordinating body for the expenditures of the EAGF and EAFRD and in particular has developed the Area Monitoring System of the new CAP reform 2023-2027 as established by the article 65.4 letter b) of the Eu Regulation No 2021/2116.

Ivica Janeski

Ivica Janeski is a Paying Agency expert with extensive professional experience in the establishment and operation of agriculture and rural development Paying Agencies in countries that are in the process of joining the European Union. In 2006 he was part of the team which established the Agency for financial support in agriculture and rural development of North Macedonia and completed the process of accreditation of the Paying Agency for decentralized management of the European Union funds from the Instrument for pre-accession assistance for rural development in 2009. From 2013 to 2019 he was involved in the capacity building and accreditation of the Albanian Paying Agency. His expertize are project approval procedures, on-the-spot controls and authorization of payments of European Union funded projects through the Instrument for pre- accession assistance for rural development.

Indulis Āboliņš

Indulis Āboliņš is a deputy director at the Rural Support Service, which is a Paying Agency for EU agricultural and rural development funds in Latvia. He has started his professional experience by working in the Ministry of Agriculture during the pre-accession period, where he has been responsible for designing Rural Development Programmes. Currently he is in charge of implementation of direct payments, eco-schemes and area related rural development measures. In addition to his main duties, he also has consultancy experience in Georgia, North-Macedonia and Turkey in relation to improvement of operations of Paying Agencies.