Prostitution in Georgia is illegal but widespread, particularly in the capital, Tbilisi.[1][2] Many NGO's attribute this to the harsh economic conditions according to the US State Department.[3] Prostitution occurs on the streets,[4] in bars, nightclubs,[5] hotels and brothels.[6] UNAIDS estimate there are 6,525 prostitutes in Georgia.[7]

The Black Sea resorts become a sex tourism destination in the summer months. Many prostitutes, mainly Central Asians and Russians from the North Caucasus come to the area. Due to the close proximity of the Turkish border, and no visa requirements for Turks, many men from Turkey come to the area to find prostitutes.[8]

Child prostitution is a problem in the country.[2][5]

Legal situation

Prostitution is punishable by a fine.[4] Related activities are prohibited by the criminal code:[4][9]

Prostitutes are sometimes arrested for public order offences.

Sexual health

Georgia has a high rate of STIs, especially near the Turkish border.[citation needed] Although UNAIDS report high condom use between sex workers and clients (95.4%), sex workers are a high risk group.[10] Infections are usually transferred during violent attacks by clients.[11] Stigmatisation prevents some sex workers accessing healthcare.[11] There is a 10.8% active syphilis rate and 0.7% HIV prevalence amongst sex workers according to UNAIDS.[12]

Condom and lube distribution and also redirection for treatment are provided by the NGO Tanadgoma.[4]

Sex trafficking

See also: Human trafficking in Georgia (country)

Georgia is a source, transit, and destination country for women and girls subjected to sex trafficking. Women and girls from Georgia are subjected to sex trafficking within the country, in Turkey, and, to a lesser extent, in China and the United Arab Emirates. Georgia is also a transit country for women from Central Asia exploited in Turkey. Women from Azerbaijan and Central Asia are subjected to forced prostitution in the tourist areas of the Adjara region and in saunas, strip clubs, casinos, and hotels. The majority of identified trafficking victims are young, foreign women seeking employment.[13]

In 2006 the country incorporated into its domestic law the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress, and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, supplementing the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, and the Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings.[3] The punishment for human trafficking in Georgia is 15 years. There is also a special law to protect families of Georgian women who fear reprisals from gang masters of women who refuse to be forced into prostitution abroad.

The government investigated 12 new cases of sex trafficking in 2016, compared to 11 in 2015. The government prosecuted one defendant for sex trafficking in 2016, compared to two defendants in 2015.[13]

The United States Department of State Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons ranks Georgia as a 'Tier 1' country.[13]

Disputed territories

Although Abkhazia and South Ossetia have declared independence from Georgia and are self-governing, they are not generally internationally recognised.


Prostitution in Abkhazia is rampant, including child prostitution. HIV amongst sex workers is estimated to be 60%-70% in some areas.[14]

South Ossetia

Following the conflict in South Ossetia, many men left to work in Russia. Some of the women who were left behind were forced to turn to prostitution to survive. Many adolescents have also turned to prostitution and child prostitution is a problem,[15] especially in the capital, Tskhinvali.[16]

See also


  1. ^ "The Legal Status of Prostitution by Country". ChartsBin. Retrieved 18 February 2018.
  2. ^ a b Morrison, Thea (11 January 2017). "PM Addresses Alleged Prostitution and Discrimination at Tbilisi Nightclubs". Georgia Today on the Web. Retrieved 18 February 2018.
  3. ^ a b "Country Report on Human Rights Practices in Georgia". 11 March 2008. Retrieved 31 March 2010.
  4. ^ a b c d "Georgia". SWAN. Retrieved 18 February 2018.
  5. ^ a b Mielnikiewicz, Justyna; Rimple, Paul (1 August 2014). "Georgia: Teenage Prostitution Part of a Bigger Problem". Eurasianet. Retrieved 18 February 2018.
  6. ^ Kharshiladze, Giorgi; Ghudushauri, Giorgi (15 January 2015). "No comment - What happens outside Tbilisi's brothels". GeorgianJournal. Retrieved 18 February 2018.
  7. ^ "Sex workers: Population size estimate - Number, 2016". UNAIDS. Archived from the original on 4 June 2019. Retrieved 21 July 2018.
  8. ^ Imedaishvili, Nata (8 July 2012). "Locals Helpless As Sex Tourism Hits Georgian Black Sea Village". RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty. Retrieved 18 February 2018.
  9. ^ "Criminal Code of Georgia". The Legislative Herald of Georgia. Retrieved 18 February 2018.
  10. ^ "Condom use among sex workers - Percent, 2016". UNAIDS. Archived from the original on 22 July 2018. Retrieved 22 July 2018.
  11. ^ a b Karelidze, Tamar (7 September 2015). "General Conditions of Sex Workers and Prostitution in Georgia". Gender Informational Network of South Caucasus. Retrieved 18 February 2018.
  12. ^ "HIV prevalence amongst sex workers". UNAIDS. 2016. Archived from the original on 22 July 2018. Retrieved 22 July 2018.
  13. ^ a b c "Georgia 2017 Trafficking in Persons Report". U.S. Department of State. Archived from the original on 3 July 2017. Retrieved 18 February 2018.
  14. ^ Mitaishvil, Ramaz (12 April 2008). "Staying Healthy in Abkhazia: Manual for Russian Tourists". Abkhazia Social & Economic Research. Retrieved 18 February 2018.
  15. ^ Volkan, Vamik (2014). Killing in the Name of Identity: A Study of Bloody Conflicts. Pitchstone Publishing (US&CA). ISBN 9780985281595.
  16. ^ Volkan, Vamik D. (2014). Enemies on the Couch: A Psychopolitical Journey Through War and Peace. Pitchstone Publishing (US&CA). ISBN 9781939578112.