Mikheil Saakashvili, President of Georgia. (Interpressnews.)

TBILISI, DFWatch–The Georgian president Mikheil Saakashvili asks the new government, which took power a year ago, to continue large projects started under him.

Saakashvili, speaking after an awards ceremony for a TV show on Friday, said a new prognosis by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) which downgraded Georgia’s economic growth from 6 to 2.5 percent was ‘unimaginable’.

The president’s party, the National Movement, believes the new prognosis is realistic and advises the government to take real steps in response to it.

Saakashvili underlined that it is unacceptable to let Georgia’s economy collapse.

“Fast economic development is our protection from increasing Russian aggression,” he said. “We don’t have such an attitude that if the government has problems we are happy with it because we may come back into government.”

The president said he believes that it is necessary to implement large scale projects to solve these problems.

“My advice to them will be to have large projects, continue construction of bypass railway, build port, resorts, don’t move parliament from Kutaisi, because this will be damaging for the economy of western Georgia,” he said.

“Remove pause and click on play or ‘fast forward’, because we are left behind because of ‘pause’ and we need to move forward.”

Saakashvili’s second term ends in a few weeks. There will be a presidential election on October 27, and the inauguration must be held not later than three weeks after the election. When a new president is sworn in, Saakashvili will no longer have power.