The legislative structure of the cultural sector in Georgia includes the following:
- many laws and acts of legislation passed by the Parliament;
- resolutions of the Cabinet of Ministers of Georgia;
- President’s decrees, edicts, decisions and instructions of respective ministries and governmental agencies; and
- decisions of local authorities.
The legislation on culture is continually reorganised, revised and refreshed, which requires a great number of new changes to the laws and instructions.
Many laws are of a declarative nature, are ineffective and regularly violated. Some laws within the cultural sphere conflict with the fundamental laws in other socio-economic sectors. The established norms and conditions are not often observed because there is no clear responsibility and distribution of powers at different levels of authority (including inter-ministerially). In some fields of the cultural sector, especially in the culture industries, no juridical / legal base exists.
The laws determining the structures of cultural policy or declaration of principles
In order to guarantee the constitutional principles, the following laws in the cultural sector have been adopted:
The Law on Culture (1997) is guided by the Constitution and considers the centuries-old cultural tradition and world experience in the cultural sphere. The lawis the legislative base for development of culture and protection and maintenance of cultural values in Georgia. Cultural heritage is defined as the main state priority in the Law on Culture.
The aim of the Law on Culture is to protect the rights of citizens in the sphere of culture; to determine legislative norms and principles for the use of cultural values and results of creative work; to determine the responsibility of individuals and legal entities for the maintenance and protection of cultural values; to ensure non-interference of the state in the creative process and free cultural activity of Georgian citizens; to promote involvement of Georgian culture into the universal system of cultural processes and to carry out international obligations undertaken by the state.
According to the Constitution, this Law reinforces the right of an individual to carry out cultural activities and this is the integral and inviolable right of all citizens. All citizens of Georgia are entitled to carry out free creative and cultural work according to his / her interests and abilities.
The legislation determines a creative worker as an author, reproducer or interpreter of cultural values in the development of intellectual and creative process (see chapter 3.5.1).
List of existing cultural legislation
|Title of the act||Year of adoption|
|Laws setting out cultural policy frameworks or declarations of principle|
|Law on Culture||12.06.1997.N 751 – II ს (last amendment 2007) determines legal principles, regulates social relations associated with creation, use, distribution and preservation of cultural heritage and cultural values and providing access to them.|
|Laws establishing the scope, operation(s), governing structure(s) and procedures for funding cultural institutions|
|Law on Cultural Heritage||08.05.2007./N 4708 – Iს /, regulates legal, organisational and economic relations in the sphere of preservation of cultural heritage.|
|Law on Architectural Activity||14.04.1998 ,/ 1335–IIს/ establishes legal norms of activities in the sphere of Architecture and regulates social relations in the field.|
|Law on State Supervision of Architectural and Construction Activity||14.11.1997 / N1105-Is /(last amended in 2009) This law regulates the state supervision of architectural and construction activity, the functions and rights of the supervisory authorities thereof, responsibility of entrepreneurial entities in this sphere.|
|Concerning Spatial Organisation and City Construction Basis||02.06.2005/1506-Iს/(last amendment 2011) This law establishes the subject, principles, priorities, objectives and aims of spatial organisation and city construction; the forms and role of spatial-territorial planning and planning documents in development on the territory of Georgia.|
|Law on Design||04.05. 2010 /3030-Is/ Pursuant to the Constitution of Georgia this law recognises the inviolability of the right of ownership of intellectual property; it regulates the relations connected with creation, registration, use, legal protection of design and the rights thereof. The law is extended to the design which is registered under the procedure established by the law in the industrial property register by the National Centre for Intellectual Property SAKPATENTI or to which the international registration is extended.|
|Law on Museums||22.06.2001. N 990 – IIÓ (last amendment 2007), regulates social relations in the sphere of museum activities.|
|Law on Public Theatres||09.06.2006. N 3288 – I, regulates legal, organisational and economic relations in the sphere of Public Theatres, defines the legal status of theatres, their financing and how they are established.|
|Law on State Support to National Cinematography||05.12.2000. /N655- Iს/ establishes legal norms of activities in the sphere of cinematography and regulates social relations in the field of production, distribution of films.|
|Law on Creative Workers and Creative Unions||08.06.1999,/ 2059–IIს/ last amendment 2011), regulates relations between artists’ unions and the government.|
|Law on Library Management||11.06.1996./N 267 – IIს/, defines the status of libraries, legal and organisation principles of activities of libraries.|
|Law on the Import and Export of Cultural Goods||22.06.2001./N 985 – IIს/ (last amendment 2007), regulates development of international co-operation in the field of culture.|
|Law on Copyright and Related Rights||22.06.1999,/ 2112–IIს/ (last amendment 2007), regulates norms of copyright and joint copyrights, fulfilment of international obligations; protects personal non-property and property rights of authors and their assignees.|
|Law on Limitary Measures in Connection with Intellectual Property||22.06.1999. /2159–IIს/ (last amendment 2010) The law establishes the rule of application of the special measures on the state boundary of Georgia in case of imports or exports; to products manufactured with violation of the copyright, or the rights on the product name or geographical specification. It is based on the provisions regarding special measures on the state boundary of the agreement on the aspects of the intellectual property related to the trade concluded in the framework of the world Trade Organisation.|
|Law On National Archive Fund and National Archive||29.12. 2006/4205-rs/ (last amendment 2011), regulates relations in the field of accounting, preservation and use of the Archive Fund and other main issues related to archive science.|
|Law on Broadcasting||23.12.2004, /780–რს/(last amendment 2011) determines the obligations of public broadcasting to protect the public interest in the sphere of news, public and political, educational, cultural and sport programmes; determines the obligations of public broadcasting to protect the public interest in the sphere of news, public and political, educational, cultural and sport programmes. The law subject to the freedom of word and opinion and free entrepreneurship determines the rule of operation of broadcasting, the rule of creation and function of the independent regulatory authority in the sphere of broadcasting, the terms and conditions of regulation of activity, rules and procedures of licensing in this sphere.|
|Law on Telecommunications||2005|
|Law on Electronic Communications||02.06.2005/1514-Iს/(last amendment 2011) The law establishes the legal and economic basics of activity with electronic communication networks and facilities on the territory of Georgia, the principles of formation and regulation of the competitive environment in this sphere, the functions of the independent national regulatory authority (Georgian National Communication Commission), the rights and duties of natural persons and legal entities during ownership of electronic communication networks and facilities, their operation and service provision.|
|Concordat- Constitutional Agreement between the State and the Autocephalous Orthodox Church of Georgia||2002, regulates relations between the Autocephalous Orthodox Church of Georgia and the government.|
|Laws providing financing|
|Law on the Budgetary System||29.12.2004, defines allocation of public funds for culture between different levels of government.|
|Law on the State Budget of Georgia||2005|
|The Tax Code||0917.09.2010 /N3591-IIს/|
|The public laws that determine the legal status, rules of activity and terms of reference of the state institutions of various levels|
|Law on Structure, Authority and Procedures of the Government of Georgia||11.02.2004./N3277-IIს/ (last amendment 2011).|
|Law on Public Service||31.10. 1997/ N 1022 – Is /(last amended in 2011) The law establishes the legal basics of public service organisations in Georgia, regulates the relations connected with the performance of public service, determines the legal status of the service.|
|Law on Legal Entities under Public Law||28.05.1999./N 2052 – Ibis/ (last amended in 2011). The law establishes the rule of creation, activity and organisation of legal persons of public law.|
|The Organic Law on Self Government||16.12.2005/2304-rs/ (last amended in 2011). The law in pursuance with paragraph 4 of Article 2 of the Constitution of Georgia and the European Charter On Local Self-government determines the legal, economic and financial basics of implementation of local self-government, state guarantees thereof, the rule of creation of local self-government bodies, their powers and relations with the state authorities.|
|Law on Independent National Regulatory Authorities||13.09. 2002 /N1666-Is (last amended in 2011). The purpose of this law is to create the stable legal basis and perfect institutional environment for the sustainable operation of the national regulatory authorities in order to provide in the various spheres of the economy the balancing of interests of license holders and consumers, effective pricing and providing services and goods. The law establishes: the independence of independent regulatory authorities operating in Georgia from any political pressure, inappropriate influences and illegitimate interference of state authorities or other officials as well as from any other actions which may infringe their independence; the power of implementation of the perfect regulation of the concrete sphere; responsibility for ensuring the transparency and reliability of decision-making procedures.|
|Law on Official Language||22/07/2015 / N 4084-RS / The law enforces the constitutional status of the state language, establishes the legal basis for its use and protection, regulates legal relations of the functioning of state and non-state languages.|
|Law of Georgia on Innovations||22 /06/ 2016, N5501-IIs “CHAPTER I. GENERAL PROVISIONS. Article 1. Purpose and Scope of Law. 1. The purpose of this Law is to create and improve the ecosystem of national innovations necessary for socioeconomic development of Georgia, construction of economy based on the knowledge and innovations in the country, promotion of launching the technologies created in other countries in Georgia, promoting introduction and export the intellectual property and technology created in Georgia, the access to the advanced technology in all areas of science and business in order to increase competitiveness in the fields. 2. This Law applies to the entities of innovative activities, infrastructure supporting innovative activities, funding innovative activities and commercialization of innovations.´´|