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Georgia's central bank leader to revive $289 million IMF program

Published 11/09/2023, 12:45 AM
Updated 11/09/2023, 03:01 AM

Today, Natia Turnava, the pioneering female head of Georgia's central bank, expressed her determination to revive a stalled $289 million International Monetary Fund (IMF) program. The announcement was made during an international news interview on Thursday, Nov 09, 2023. This urgency is driven by the economic repercussions of Russia's invasion of Ukraine on Georgia's $30 billion South Caucasus economy and the need to restore investor confidence.

The IMF program had been put on hold due to worries over regulatory independence and the enforcement of local sanctions. Turnava's initiative to restart this deal is anticipated to bolster investor confidence, which is critical as Georgia contends with the economic aftershocks of Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

The Russian incursion into Ukraine led to a significant reshuffling of trade and resulted in a large influx of migrants into Georgia. Despite a revenue windfall of about $2 billion for Georgia in 2022, there has been a notable drop in Russia-related money transfers this year.

Turnava assumed her role in June during existing hold-ups in the three-year IMF program. A law enacted towards the end of her predecessor's term threatened the autonomy of the National Bank of Georgia. This legislation mandated structural changes, increased executive board members and established the position of first vice governor, a role now held by Turnava herself. The ongoing controversy over the bank's threatened autonomy continues to be a significant issue.

The revival of the IMF program under Turnava's leadership indicates her commitment to strengthening Georgia's economy amidst challenging times. The move is expected to reassure investors and help mitigate the financial impact resulting from geopolitical tensions in the region.

This article was generated with the support of AI and reviewed by an editor. For more information see our T&C.

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