The National Bank of Georgia (NBG) made its first foreign exchange intervention amid the COVID-19 crisis on March 13, 2020.
The NBG sold 20 million USD to mitigate the economic shock caused by the first wave of the coronavirus in the country.
The central bank made a total of 29 foreign exchange interventions to ease the volatility of the GEL exchange rate and sold an unprecedented amount of 993 million USD over the past 12 months. In more details, foreign exchange interventions of 873 million USD were made in 2020, while 120 million USD - in 2021.
According to official statistics, as of February 28, Georgia's foreign exchange reserves amounted to 4.076 billion USD, which was 25.5 million USD less than in January. Foreign exchange reserves were 638 million USD up y-o-y, which was related to the foreign loans attracted by the country.
The GEL exchange rate was sharply depreciated in 2020 during the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic. On March 1, 1 USD was worth 2.79 GEL, within two weeks the USD exchange rate first reached 2.99 GEL, then the value of 1 USD exceeded 3.40 GEL. The USD exchange rate hit a record high on March 27, 2020, when the cost of 1 USD totaled 3.48 GEL.
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