Since its start, the pandemic has spread to more than 180 countries, with governments around the world each reacting differently to the new global threat. The Oxford COVID-19 Government Response Tracker gauges the strictness of countries’ responses using a stringency index, which compares governmental policies over several dimensions.
On 28 May, Georgia announced its fourth anti-crisis plan, in which the government will subsidize 4 percent of the interest rate of mortgage loans for five years. The subsidy will be issued for loans not exceeding 200,000 GEL and will only apply to those taking mortgages for the purchase of residential apartments that are newly built or under construction, from 1 June 2020 to 1 January 2021. The state will also ensure the completion of ongoing construction.
In April 2020, total generation and consumption nearly balanced (944 mln kWh of generation and 941 mln kWh of consumption), with power generation exceeding consumption by only 3 mln. kWh (corresponding to 0.3% of total generation: Figure 1). This occurred due to the simultaneous decrease in total consumption (7%) and total generation (2%). Interestingly, over the same period, wind power generation increased by a remarkable 23% compared to April 2019.
Georgia reacted to the COVID-19 pandemic by immediately introducing aggressive measures. Closing international borders, declaring a state of emergency, shutting down public transportation, banning local travel and public gatherings, closing restaurants and shopping malls, and introducing a nighttime curfew—these are all instruments that were used by the country’s government and health authorities to stop the spread of the virus. As a result, the health system was not overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients.
The estimated real GDP declined by 16.6% in April 2020 yearly and by 3.6 percent in the first four months of 2020. In April, the estimated real growth compared to the same period of the previous year posted negative in almost all activities, except mining and quarrying. Moreover, VAT payers’ turnover, used in rapid estimations of economic growth, dropped by 32.8% annually over the same period.