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Health workers have been essential with the COVID-19 pandemic. Acknowledging the role of frontline fighters against the new coronavirus, the European Union, under its EU4Business initiative, and UNDP provided protective equipment to ambulance and emergency crews at the Emergency Situations Coordination and Urgent Assistance Center in Georgia.

The assistance included 7,500 protective face shields produced by a Georgian company called CaucasPack. With EU4Business and UNDP support, medical personnel throughout the country will be able to take care of Georgians in much greater safety.

Sharp adjustment with EU4Business

Since its establishment in 2007 in Rustavi, a city about 26 kilometers southeast of Tbilisi, CaucasPack has been producing plastic cups and food containers. When faced with increased demand for personal protective equipment in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, the company shifted its production in response. With EU and UNDP support, CaucasPack switched producing face shields, which also made it possible for the company to keep 99 employees on the payroll, despite a broader pandemic lockdown. The shields themselves are made of recycled plastic bottles, thus preventing the waste of resources and contributing to a reduction in environmental pollution.

Together to a safer future

The EU and UNDP plan to further support healthcare professionals and the entire at-risk workforce throughout Georgia, fighting on the front line against the pandemic and carefully keeping an eye on public health.

Indeed, the question of further assistance for healthcare workers was the purpose of a recent visit to the Emergency Situations Coordination and Urgent Assistance Center in Tbilisi. UNDP Head Louisa Vinton and Dominik Papenheim, Team Leader for Economic Development and Market Opportunities with the EU Delegation to Georgia, met with Avtandil Talakvadze, the Center’s director.

Strengthening Georgian companies, especially in the packaging sector, is one of the key priorities of the EU4Business Initiative promoting private sector development in Georgia.

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