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>> EBRD SAYS KYRGYZ ECONOMY TO SHINRK BY 4% THIS YEAR BECASUE OF THE IMPACT OF THE CORONAVIRUS
– Kyrgyzstan has reported 7,691 infections of the coronavirus, including 92 deaths, by July 6. Most have been reported in the south of the country and are blamed on pilgrims returning from the Hajj in Saudi Arabia. The highest concentration of confirmed coronavirus cases is in Osh and Jala-Abad.
— Analysts said that the real number of infected people and deaths from the coronavirus may be far higher.
— Like other countries in the region, cases have risen since an initial lockdown was relaxed. Kyrgyz officials, though, said that they had no plans to impose a second lockdown. It has started to tighten restrictions though, including shutting down public transport in Bishkek.
— Officials said that around a fifth of the recorded cases of the coronavirus are health workers, highlighting the lack of personal protective equipment in Kyrgyzstan for health workers.
— The Kyrgyz authorities lifted the country’s state of emergency at the start of May. By May 21 most of the lockdown restrictions that had limited people’s movement, closed shops and markets had also been lifted.
— Swimming pools and traditional banyas, considered higher risk infection places, remain closed until later in the year.
— Kyrgyzstan’s President Sooronbai Jeenbkov was the first world leader to ask the IMF for financial help in fighting the impact of the coronavirus. The IMF on March 27 approved a $127m grant. He has also asked for debt relief from China and the West.
— The Kyrgyz som has lost around 15% of its value. Economists have warned that the currency will lose more its value because of an impending recession in Russia linked to the coronavirus and a collapse in oil prices that will push Russian into a recession. Kyrgyzstan, like its neighbour Tajikistan, is reliant on remittance flows from its workforce in Russia to prop up its economy. This flow will now dry up.
— The World Bank has slashed its economic growth rate for Kyrgyzstan for 2020 to 0.4% from a previously projected 4.5% because of the coronavirus.
— Kyrgyzstan asked China to restructure its $1.8b debt because of the impact of the coronavirus.
— The EBRD said that Kyrgyzstan’s economy would shrink by 4% this year because of the impact of the coronavirus.
— Police have charged pilgrims who returned from Pakistan and Saudi Arabia with not complying to an order to self-isolate and for spreading the coronavirus. The pilgrims have been blamed for bringing the coronavirus into Kyrgyzstan.