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Economy Minister discusses Pension System initiative by ‘European Georgia’ amid Coronavirus preventive measurements

By Liza Mchedlidze
Tuesday, March 17
The Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development Natia Turnava stated that in the middle of the Government planning a preventive measurement of Covid-19, decisions must not affect the pension system negatively after the emergency regime is over. By stating this, Turnava responded to ‘European Georgia’s’ new initiative of the Government postponing compulsory pension contributions for 8 months amid Coronavirus’ effect on the Economic situation in the country.

Natia Turnava responded to the initiative, saying that the pandemic will be over ‘sooner or later’ but that pensions will remain a huge issue:

“We should not make decisions that will burden us in the future to return to normal functioning, such as abolishing pension reform” she told reporters.

The Economy Minister called on colleagues to take their statements more responsibly:

“Coronavirus will be over sooner or later, but pensions and pensioners will remain a constant issue, accordingly, I am asking people to be more responsible regarding such statements” said Natia Turnava.

“As you know, the government's economic team has taken unprecedented steps in recent days to help business and help the most vulnerable industries. We continue to see problems in different areas and are ready for an operational response. The whole community is consolidating in the face of this challenge, which is the right thing to do. Against this backdrop, we will probably be witnessing many initiatives coming from different political groups, but one thing to keep in mind, no matter how good the politicians are, they are only responsible for their own statements and we are the responsible government and therefore each step should be taken into account. Since we do not know how long it will take to overcome this problem. Sooner or later, of course, we will overcome it, but we do not have an accurate picture of time, so all of our steps must be resourced correctly. How and when we will manage to take any of these steps and what will be the sources of funding.”

On March 16, ‘European Georgia’ presented an initiative to postpone Pension contributions for 8 months amid the Economic crisis caused by Covid-19. According to them, the impact of the initiative, if it's taken into force, will be very effective and make a positive impact on economic growth of the country.

“108.2 million GEL will remain in the pockets of the employees, which they will use to cover their growing expenses; GEL 83.1 million will be left for entrepreneurs and employers, which will reduce job losses and increase employment; GEL 133.3 million will be released from the state budget, which will be needed to cover health and social expenses. All this will leave more money for the citizens, will have a positive impact on the economic growth rate and will halt the growth of prices,” said the European Georgia initiative.