Since 1999, in compliance with the Law on Legal Entities under the Public Law, the main institutions of culture have been re-registered and established as legal entities.
In 2021, 77 cultural institutions subordinate to the new Ministry of Culture, Sport and Youth of Georgia. Some state institutions – libraries, archives, and some museums fall under the responsibility of the Parliament, Ministry of Justice and municipalities.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, in 2020, under the consolidated Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sports, the funding for culture was reduced in the development programmes and free projects.
After the re-establishment of the Ministry of Culture, Sport and Youth of Georgia in 2021, some state associations have undergone changes (for example 4 museums have been excluded from the structure of the National Museum and now subordinate directly to the Ministry).
There is an example of transition from private to public ownership – the Black Sea Arena was handed over to the state by the Cartu Foundation.
State-run foundations do not exist in Georgia. Despite the urgent need for public foundations to accumulate funds for the development and support of culture and the constant debates on this issue, there has been no adequate legislative activity in this area. All private donations go through foundations with the status of non-governmental, non-profit organizations.
All private donations for the public organizations and institutions – legal persons under the public law subordinated to the Ministry of Culture, Sport and Youth of Georgia of Georgia – go through the foundations with the status of non-governmental non-profit organizations.
The long-term cooperation between public institutions of culture and private sponsors is somewhat irregular and unofficial. One of the few sponsors regularly cooperating with key organizations of national importance is the Georgian foundation Cartu which has financed large projects such as the rehabilitation of several theatres of national importance and institutions of higher cultural education.
Other important examples of cooperation between the state and international foundations are the Soros Foundation, the British Council in Georgia, the U.S. Ambassadors’ Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP), etc. These initiatives often encourage participation of NGOs and cultural societies to cooperate in projects with central or local authorities as a third partner.
Successful examples of public-private partnerships or collaborations (involving state, municipalities and NGOs) are the traditional international film festival “Prometheus”, Theatre Festival Gift, Tbilisi Jazz Festival, and other international events, which attract many visitors and sponsors.
A special mention should be given to the Fund for Preservation and Rescue of Georgian Historical Monuments, which is the only privately funded donor organization active in the cultural heritage field since 2004. The Fund has the biggest share in financing the restoration, inventory and rehabilitation of listed properties. In 2004-2009, the Fund financed more than 430 projects all over the country, including 390 Orthodox churches (after the restoration most of these churches reopened). The archaeological works have been implemented on the most important sites in Georgia and abroad (e.g. Ghalia Monastery in Cyprus). The Fund also provided financing to equip conservation research laboratories at the Restoration Faculty of the Academy of Fine Arts and the Nokalakevi museum-reserve. The Fund actively cooperates with the MoC, the National Agency for Cultural Heritage Preservation and the Patriarchate of Georgia to define the priorities and agree to the annual list of monuments for rehabilitation.