December 7, 2017 / 6:37 PM / in a year

IMF approves $42.4 million loan disbursement to Georgia

TBILISI (Reuters) - The International Monetary Fund said on Thursday it had approved $42.2 million tranche disbursement to ex-Soviet Georgia under the fund’s three-year $285 million loan program.

“The program is on track with all end-June 2017 performance criteria and structural benchmarks met,” the fund said in a statement.

“Georgia’s economic performance has improved, but risks to the outlook remain.”

The former Soviet republic, through which pipelines carry Caspian oil and gas to Europe, is recovering from a decline in exports and a plunge in the currencies of its main trading partners, which have depressed economic growth in recent years.

The situation started to improve this year and the economy expanded by 4.9 percent year-on-year in the first 10 months of 2017, up from 2.5 percent in the same period of 2016.

Economic growth accelerated thanks to higher exports and remittances from abroad.

The IMF said in October that it now expected Georgia’s economy to grow 4.3 percent this year, up from a previous forecast of 3.5 percent.

Reporting by Margarita Antidze; Editing by Alison Williams

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