Carl Hartzell -- Unprecedented support to Georgia represents a demonstration of the EU’s and the whole Team Europe’s solidarity with a key partner and friend
Carl Hartzell -- Unprecedented support to Georgia represents a demonstration of the EU’s and the whole Team Europe’s solidarity with a key partner and friend

EU Ambassador to Georgia Carl Hartzell has sent a letter to the Prime Minister of Georgia. The Ambassador says in the letter that the European Commission has proposed a third package, in the form of €150 million of loans on highly favourable terms to further help Georgia cover its immediate financing needs.

“While the European Union is itself feeling the strain of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, it is taking far-reaching measures to overcome these challenges both at home and beyond, through a coordinated response together with its key partners. It is at times like these that the need for solidarity is most important. We are acting in this spirit under a ‘Team Europe’ approach, which combines the resources from the EU, its Member States and their financial institutions, as well as the European Investment Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

Team Europe support to Georgia backs the healthcare front and addresses short-term financing needs, as well as the longer-term structural impact on the society and the economy. This is part of a multilateral response, as also seen in the open letter issued together with international financing institutions on the eve of the agreement between Georgia and the IMF to address the financing gap in the state budget caused by the pandemic.

To date, two Team Europe packages for Georgia have been announced and are already being implemented. The first one, presented on 30 March, provided for urgent healthcare supplies and technical expertise, assistance to vulnerable groups, and wide liquidity support to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), including in local currency. The second package was unveiled on 8 April and included over €183 million for Georgia in support to socio-economic measures, including a contribution to bridging the financing gap.

These packages have brought the total COVID-related support to Georgia to €250 million in non-reimbursable grants to date. It was made possible thanks to an acceleration of available resources and redirection of existing programmes to address the immediate needs stemming from the pandemic and its fallout.

Today I am proud to convey that the European Commission has proposed a third package, in the form of €150 million of loans on highly favourable terms to further help Georgia cover its immediate financing needs. Together with IMF support, our funds aim to enhance macroeconomic stability and create space to allow resources to be channelled towards protecting the Georgian citizens and mitigating the pandemic’s negative socio-economic consequences”, reads the letter.

According to the Ambassador, this unprecedented support to Georgia in its efforts to tackle the coronavirus pandemic and its social and economic consequences is both robust and targeted.

“It represents an important demonstration of the EU’s and the whole Team Europe’s solidarity with a key partner and friend at a time of unprecedented crisis”, the Ambassador says in the letter.

 

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