David Zalkaliani is a Georgian career diplomat serving as Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia since the 21st of June 2018. He graduated from Ivan Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University majoring in International law in 1992. Zalkaliani joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs shortly after Georgian independence in 1992, serving first as Attache in the Department of International Organizations, and then Deputy Head of Division to the same department in 1995.
During this period, he worked to bring Georgia into the system of international relations and organizations, bringing Georgia into cooperation with the European Community. From 1996-2000, Zalkaliani served as Counsellor at the Embassy of Georgia to the Republic of Austria, where he took part in the negotiating process of the Agreement on Adaptation of the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe, participated in high level summits throughout the region, and was an active participant in the process of negotiation for the withdrawal of Russian military bases from Georgian territory.
Between 2000-2001, he served as Counsellor at the Department for European Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia, returning to Vienna in 2001-2002 to assume the position of Deputy Permanent Representative of Georgia.
From 2002-2004, he was Senior Counsellor at the Embassy of Georgia to the United States, Mexico and Canada, during which time US-Georgian defense cooperation intensified considerably. He continued his diplomatic career in Uzbekistan as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Georgia to the Republic of Belarus.
In 2009, he entered politics, and became First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs. Since his appointment, he has actively engaged in the process of preparing the Georgia-EU Association Agreement as the Chief Negotiator from the Georgian side. Negotiations were successfully completed in June 2014 with the signing of the Association Agreement, including a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA) component. From 2012-2014, Zalkaliani was also Chief Negotiator for the Georgian side in the Geneva International Discussions, and co-chair of the working group for the US-Georgia Charter on Strategic Partnership.
In 2015, Zalkaliani continued his diplomatic career as an executive director for the newly founded Leval Mikeladze Foundation, participating in research of public policy, advocacy projects, capacity building for diplomats, and academic and public discussions on foreign policy priorities. After a second tenure as First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, he was promoted to the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia.
Zalkaliani is married and has two daughters.