IMF Regional Economic Outlook Presentation: Caucasus and Central Asia

Presentation: Caucasus and Central Asia”, April 28, 2020
Speaker: Mr. Jihad Azour, Director of the Middle East and Central Asia Department
Followed by a discussion with
Mr. Koba Gvenetadze, Governor, the National Bank of Georgia
Mr. Kairat Kelimbetov, Governor, the Astana International Financial Center.
Date and time: April 28 (Tuesday) at 5:30 p.m. (7:30 a.m. U.S. Eastern Time).

The Caucasus and Central Asia (CCA) region is being strongly affected by COVID-19 and the sharp decline of global oil prices. The priority has been to respond to challenges of the pandemic, including through higher health sector expenditures, travel and transport restrictions, physical-distancing measures, and where possible, fiscal support to vulnerable groups, the unemployed, and small and medium enterprises. The growth outlook for 2020 has turned from positive to near-zero or negative across the region. There are significant uncertainties about the duration, depth, and spillovers from the two shocks, with concerns about job losses, fiscal and foreign exchange buffers, debt, financial institutions, and loss of progress in reforms to business environments, regional integration, and diversification. The IMF is working with other international and regional financial institutions to provide rapid support.