Taking into account the priorities set down by the Georgian Government in its Migration Strategy, the areas covered by the VLAP and the objectives, expected results and activities specified in the ‘Enhancing Georgia’s Migration Management’ (ENIGMMA) project, ICMPD supports MFA of Georgia in area of implementation of the new Law of Georgia on the Legal Status of Aliens and Stateless Persons (further – the Aliens Law). The project work plan was elaborated according to the specific needs of the Ministry and a long-term working group was established, supported by the national and EU MS experts. Accordingly, the ENIGMMA project in close cooperation with national and Austrian and Slovenian visa experts provided input in development of supporting legal acts to ensure implementation of Aliens Law. In particular provisions of the bylaws were reviewed and analysed in conformity with the requirements of the Aliens Law and current developments in the country; support in drafting/development process of the relevant internal legal acts, development of recommendations were provided; and contribution to the development of the Georgian visa appeal procedure through sharing information on/analysing visa appeal practice in EU MS were provided as well as for the development of the visa applicants’ assessment module.
Due to the significant policy and institutional changes brought by the Aliens Law, development of a comprehensive concept on monitoring of the work performed by the consular representatives abroad was extremely important for the Ministry. Thus, the ENIGMMA project jointly with Consular Department of MFA Georgia and in close cooperation with national and Austrian visa experts: evaluated and analysed existing visa statistics visa piloting monitoring missions and through Consular Case Management Electronic System (further – CCMES); developed monitoring guidelines and methodology; and analysed the lessons learned and provided recommendations in order to strengthen the sustainability of the suggested program. Pilot monitoring missions were held in three pre-selected consular services abroad in Israel, in Turkey and in Iran and general overview of the Georgian visa policy and practice as seen on-the-spot, as well as the recommendations, were presented to the Consular Department of MFA for further consideration. Piloting missions also aimed at getting familiar with the Austrian visa counter management and security standards, supporting on-the-spot activities and strengthening contacts between Georgian and EU MS consular officers.
In parallel, the ENIGMMA project together with the experts permanently conducted assessment missions to review the status quo on visa policy implementation; to provide needed assistance on visa-related issues; and to conduct various thematic trainings for the representative of the Ministry as well as for the Georgian Consular Officers abroad.