TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian lari is on course for a new historic low, after setting a record earlier this year at 2.4921 laris per US dollar. Today it is valued at 2.4899.
Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili explained the new drop in the value of the lari is as a result of growing imports.
“The changes are a result of increased amount of import as the consumption has significantly grown in the country. The amount of export has also increased, but since the prices are low on the export market – export couldn’t make up the import. This is why it happens. We began to adjust import and the currency will stabilize again for sure,” he said on Sunday.
The government has planned specific measures to bolster the lari, he continued, but did not divulge any details.
“I want to reiterate that this process is a result of positive processes ongoing in the country.”
Zurab Tchiaberashvili from the National Movement criticized Kvirikashvili on Monday by saying that the PM is mocking people by saying that devaluation of the lari is a result of positive processes.
Tchiaberashvili thinks that the government ought to stop deficit spending, give up bonuses to the salaries, large vacation expenditures and reduce bureaucratic spending. The government should not take domestic loans, which will only worsen the situation, he warned.
“The influx of investments to the country has gone down since 2012, as has the growth in export, and therefore the inflow of USD. Even in such a critical situation, the government continues doing the same as what weakened the lari so badly,” he said.
The lari began to fall in value in November, 2014. At that time, one US dollar was equivalent to about 1.75 laris.