In 2020, despite the challenge of COVID-19, the U.S. Embassy continued to deepen our partnership with Georgia across a range of areas. We continue to work together towards a prosperous, stable, and democratic Georgia integrated into Euro-Atlantic institutions. In particular, the dedicated team of professionals at the embassy worked to partner with Georgia on COVID-19 response, health, justice and law enforcement, development, economic growth, defense, cultural preservation, and education issues.
COVID-19 Response and Health
The U.S. assistance topped $20 million in Georgia’s COVID-19 response which was distributed across the country. Our assistance combined efforts from USAID, Centers for Disease Control, Department of Defense, and the Department of State.
Justice and Law Enforcement
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency, in cooperation with Georgia’s Ministry of Internal Affairs, seized $1 million dollars worth of heroin.
In addition, the Embassy’s Office of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement (INL) held the Ninth Annual Women in Policing Conference, which brought together women law enforcement officials from around the world. To date, more than 1,100 women have graduated the program.
The Department of Justice Resident Legal Advisor taught Georgian law enforcement partners skills, techniques, and best practices on how to prosecute online child sexual exploitation, cybercrime, and to provide victim services to child victims. This resulted in the bust of a child pornography ring.
Development and Economic Growth
In 2020, USAID programs trained over 150,000 individuals, transferred agricultural technologies to 46,000 smallholders, facilitated $20 million in new sales, created over 3,000 full-time equivalent jobs, benefited more than 40,000 microenterprises, and leveraged $5.5 million in new private sector investments.
Cultural Preservation and Education
Through the Ambassador’s Fund for Cultural Preservation, the Embassy awarded $600,000 to refurbish and preserve over 1200 meters of Jvari Monastery’s façade.
Since 2011, the Embassy has provided more than $2 million to organize professional study and reporting tours, and short-term internships for Georgian print and broadcast journalists as well as for media educators. More than 200 media professionals have participated, helping to enhance the business and journalism skills of independent Georgian media outlets to improve their sustainability and professionalism, and to ensure they continue to play a positive role in informing their fellow citizens.