Ukraine welcomes release of IMF’s $17.5 bn aid

Ukraine on Thursday welcomed a decision by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to grant Kiev a third tranche of financial support worth $1 billion from its $17.5 billion aid programme.

“It shows that the international organisation supports Ukraine’s reform agenda. It is also a signal to foreign investors that our country is on the right path to restore sustainable economic growth,” Xinhua news agency quoted Oleg Churiy, deputy head of the National Bank of Ukraine, as saying.

The IMF’s funds are expected to be transferred to the accounts of the Ukrainian government in the coming days, Churiy said, noting that Kiev will use the long-awaited aid package to replenish its foreign exchange reserves.

According to the central bank, the latest IMF disbursement would also pave the way for Ukraine to receive a total of $1 billion in loan guarantees from the US and 600 million euros (about $675 million) of aid from the European Union.

The IMF executive board completed the second review of Ukraine’s economic programme on late Wednesday, enabling a release of the third tranche that has been delayed since 2015 over Kiev’s protraction in implementing the required reforms.

In 2015, Ukraine received a total of $6.7 billion from the global lender in two tranches of bailout funds.

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