This crisis is like no other – it has affected the most parts of the world including Caucasus and Central Asia - the Director of the Middle East and Central Asia Department at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Jihad Azour told The Checkpoints in an exclusive interview conducted by Elene Kvanchilashvili.
“What one could say after 6 months of the outbreak is that the countries in the region including Georgia – Azour said - were able to contain and address waves of the shock of this COVID-19 that has not only affected the life of people but also their livelihoods”.
Azour added that this crisis has made some scars – especially in sectors like tourism and others, emphasizing that this is where it is still important on one hand to maintain the support to lives and livelihoods but also to start preparing for the recovery.
On the question, what are some tough decisions that relatively poor Georgia might have to face in supporting business and citizens during and after the pandemic, Jihad Azour says Georgia has introduced certain number of reforms in the past that allowed the Georgian economy to be strong and be more resilient – both in terms of level of growth but also in terms of macroeconomic stability.
“Georgia has introduced important measures over the last decade and recent year in order to make Georgia’s economy more competitive, improve the monetary policy tools and financial sector strength” - the Director of the Middle East and Central Asia Department told The Checkpoints.
Azour believes that Georgia’s authorities –both government and the Central Bank - have done the right measures both in terms of protecting the society, but also protecting the economy and absorbing part of the shock.
“The Fund is a partner – Azour reiterated - and during this crisis we have also provided additional financial support by augmenting the sense of the program”.
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