COVID-19: Weekly Digest on Impact on SMEs in EAP (August 21, 2020)


  • Armenian enterprises engaged in the production of wine and brandy will receive state assistance through the 24th programme of anti-crisis measures to neutralize the economic consequences of Covid-19. The state will fully finance the interest rates on loans with repayment periods extended from 18 to 24 months. Read more
  • The 23rd anti-crisis programme to mitigate the adverse economic impact of Covid-19 aims to help save jobs for economic entities engaged in tourism-associated sectors. The government will subsidise 25-30% of a company’s salary fund with an overall 600-700 million AMD (about $1.25 million to $1.45 million) budget per month. Read more
  • According to the Minister of Economy, Tigran Khachatryan, the tourism sector shrinked by more than 90% due to pandemic. The Minister hopes that by the end of autumn, the tourism industry will start returning to normal activities. Read more


  • Microbusinesses in Azerbaijan received an additional 12.3 million AZN ($7.03 million) of financial support from government, according to the Ministry of Economy. The money is allocated to help 49,329 entrepreneurs counter the negative effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Read more
  • Industrial production in Azerbaijan from January-July 2020 amounted to 21.6 billion AZN ($12.71 billion), which is 2.7% less YoY, according to the State Statistical Committee. At the same time, growth of industrial production in the non-oil sector was 13%. Read more
  • Azerbaijan's GDP from January-July 2020 declined by 2.8%, according to the State Statistics Committee, and amounted to 40 billion AZN ($23.5 billion). The decline is caused by restrictions applied due to the coronavirus pandemic. Read more


  • The Ministry of Economy decided to extend the decree “On supporting the economy” and expand the list of economic activities impacted by the pandemic. Read more
  • Deposits of legal entities in July decreased by 7.2% over the month and amounted to $1.15 billion. Read more
  • Belarus signed a loan agreement with the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) for €90 million to implement the project “Emergency response to COVID-19 in the Republic of Belarus”. Read more


  • Money transfers to Georgia in July increased by 22.1%, reports the National Bank of Georgia (NBG). President of NBG declares that before the pandemic, a certain part of remittances (about 8% of bank transfers) entered Georgia through non-bank channels through visitors. Due to international travel restrictions, this part of remittances moved to banking channels and, as a result, contributed to this increase. Read more
  • Assessing the change of economic situation of their households since the pandemic outbreak, about 25% of respondents say it “worsened a lot,” 42% say it “worsened somewhat,” it stayed the same for 29%, while it improved for a mere 3%, the study by International Republican Institute(IRI) notes. 46% of respondents name unemployment as a major problem in the country. Read more
  • Georgia is currently hosting 751 foreign tourists and over 4,000 business visits, PM of Georgia reveals. According to him, the direction of business visitors is extremely important in order to gradually strengthen economic activities, especially in post-COVID era. Read more

The Republic of Moldova

  • 217 economic agents have been fined by the State Fiscal Service (SFS) for unjustifiably increasing the prices of certain food and pharmaceuticals between 1-7 March 2020. As a result, the tax authority imposed fines totalling of 548 thousand MDL ($33,000). Read more
  • The crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has negatively affected the exports of goods. According to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), exports in June went down by 6.2% compared to June 2019. Read more
  • Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the Republic of Moldova continues to export wines to foreign markets. In the first 6 months of 2020, wines were exported to 56 countries around the world, registering an increase in demand in Romania, Ukraine and Czech Republic and a decrease in the Russian Federation and Belarus. The fluctuation is related to the global pandemic situation and the temporary cessation of physical collection. Read more


  • 5,000 employment quotas for foreign IT-professionals issued by the government during the quarantine will be used for employing Belorussian IT-specialists, according to the Minister of Digital Transformation. It will help balance the demand-and-supply on the market with yearly growth of 40,000 vacancies and only 17,000 IT graduates from the Ukrainian universities. Read more
  • The Ministry of Digital Transformation has launched a 6-hour online course on digital marketing for entrepreneurs in partnership with Netpeak digital marketing agency. The course is part of the national program Diia.Business by the Ministry to help SMEs to fight the outcomes of COVID. Read more

EU4Business Updates

  • EU helps Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine with macro-financial assistance to limit economic fallout of pandemic
    On 11 August, the European Commission signed memoranda of understanding (MoU) on macro-financial assistance (MFA) programmes with eight partners in the EU Neighbourhood. The agreements are part of the €3 billion MFA package for ten enlargement and neighbourhood partners, aimed to help them limit the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic. Read more
  • Veteran in Ukraine uses quarantine to develop his EU-supported business
    The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) has shared a story about a veteran of the conflict in eastern Ukraine who used the COVID-19 lockdown as an opportunity to develop his EU-supported business. Read more