Contrepoints on Ivanishvili: The Most Generous Donor in Fight against COVID-19

The edition has published an article about Georgian businessman and politician Bidzina Ivanishvili, calling him "the most generous donor in the fight against COVID-19."

The author of the article highlights the donation transferred by Bidzina Ivanishvili's family to the StopCov Foundation and notes that Georgian businessman and former Prime Minister of the country in 2012-2013 was the biggest donor in the fight against the new coronavirus. 

"Despite the six- or seven-digit donations from many great philanthropists, the most generous per capita donor is a billionaire you probably never heard of. Bidzina Ivanishvili, a Georgian businessman who was Prime Minister of the former Soviet state in 2012-2013, is the number one donor per capita in the fight against the COVID-19 epidemic.

"The 64-year-old entrepreneur owns 4.5 billion euros, which is one-third of Georgia's gross domestic product (GDP). He transferred $30 million to the Anti-Virus Fund," reads the article by Guillaume Périgois.

The author of the article further notes that the Cartu Fund, his family foundation, has donated more than $3 billion in charity to this Caucasian country, ranging from building sports centers to restoring historic monuments. Its charitable contributions in the healthcare field alone total $ 500 million.

"This exceptionally large donation may draw attention to how Georgia has managed the epidemic.

"Taiwan, South Korea and Singapore are often cited as role models. But with only 6 deaths on May 1, 2020, Georgia is one of the best countries in Europe. A few other countries such as Malta and Liechtenstein have had no deaths, but these are relatively sparsely populated countries," notes the author, adding that the situation in Georgia is even more remarkable by the fact that one of its neighbors is Iran, a major epidemic center with one of the highest death rates in the world.

"So why was Georgia so little affected by COVID-19?" asks the author and names the reason behind the country's successful fight against the pandemic. 

As of January 22, 2020, the temperature of each newcomer to the country was controlled; on January 28, flights from China and Iran, epicenters of the global epidemic, were banned. In comparison, the 25 countries of the Schengen area, except France, suspend visas with China on February 1.

On February 26, a Georgian citizen returning from Iran via Azerbaijan was checked by border control and immediately transported to a medical establishment where he tested positive for Coronavirus.

In March, all schools, ski resorts, hotels, restaurants, cafes and other businesses were closed and it was also decided to quarantine two areas where there was a risk of spreading the virus.

"The Georgian example shows that we must learn from the experience of many other countries to improve current and future responses to the pandemic," the author concludes. 
Read the full article here 
05 May 2020 15:09