TBILISI, May 22 () – The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) said on Friday it would grant Georgia a $100 million loan to support the ex-Soviet country’s economy and provide more protection against the coronavirus.
The loan will be jointly financed by the World Bank.
Georgia, a country of 3.7 million, has reported 723 cases of the coronavirus and 12 deaths as of Friday, a relatively low number compared to some countries. However, it expects its economy to be hit hard by the impact of the pandemic as it relies heavily on tourism, forecasting GDP will shrink by 4% this year after 5.2% growth last year.
“The project’s emergency healthcare assistance and social protection measures … aim to support Georgia’s pandemic response and its efforts to protect the most vulnerable people affected by COVID-19,” Konstantin Limitovskiy, AIIB vice president for investment operations, said. (Reporting by Margarita Antidze; Editing by Susan Fenton)