(Institute for War & Peace Reporting) Experts in Azerbaijan, Armenia and Georgia have expressed guarded optimism about the potential economic benefits that the end of sanctions against Iran may bring to the South Caucasus.
A flurry of activity between the capitals greeted the January 16 lifting of sanctions, with all three republics looking to boost their struggling economies amid currency crises and low oil prices.
The media in Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia have all been preoccupied with the possible benefits of the end of Iran's international isolation.
But wedged between Russia to the north, Iran to the south and Turkey to the west, the countries of the Caucasus have always had to bear their powerful neighbours in mind when determining economic policies and strategies.
Finding a balance between domestic needs and the geopolitical pressures from adjacent countries, which are often not on good terms amongst themselves, is always a challenge. […]
"Georgia has consistently used the east-west corridor and has entirely forgotten about the north-south," said Kornely Kakachia, director of the Georgian Institute of Politics (GIP). “Now is the right time to consider this course of action, since Georgia has a chance to become an important transit corridor in this direction."
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