Montenegro declares itself a coronavirus-free state

Montenegro declares itself a coronavirus-free state
By bne IntelliNews May 25, 2020

Montenegro has become a country free from coronavirus (COVID-19) after all active cases have been cured, the Institute for Public Health (IPH) said in a statement on May 25.

The country was the last to confirm coronavirus infections in Southeast Europe, but imposed tough restrictions several days before the outbreak.

The total number of infected people stood at 324, with 315 cured and nine dead.

Following the announcement, Montenegro’s Prime Minister Dusko Markovic gave a press conference, live broadcasted by RTCG, thanking all citizens and institutions for winning the battle with the coronavirus.

Markovic said the country has all necessary equipment to deal with the virus if it returns.

Markovic also announced the government will adopt a third set of measures to support the economy. The Montenegrin government has already taken a set of measures to help firms and households to cope with the economic consequences of the pandemic. The value of the deferred liabilities of citizens and businesses for the period of three months is €1.3bn to the banks and about €100mn to the state, as part of the first emergency package. The value of the second package of economic measures is worth €75mn.

The government has borrowed €250mn from a syndicate of banks that will be used to cover the increased spending due to the coronavirus outbreak. It needs to secure an additional €100mn to €150mn to cover the budget gap.