IMF Team To Leave Ukraine, Loan Prospects Unclear

KIEV, Ukraine -- A mission of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) headed by Ceyla Pazarbasioglu will complete its work in Ukraine on Friday and so far Ukrainian prospects for obtaining the second tranche of the stabilization loan are vague.

Mission of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) headed by Ceyla Pazarbasioglu (C).

“The decision on granting the second tranche of the credit has not been made yet,” a representative of the IMF office in Kiev said.

Pazarbasioglu arrived in Ukraine on April 8 and held negotiations with President Viktor Yushchenko, Prime Minister Yulia Timoshenko, parliament speaker Vladimir Litvin, National Bank Chairman Vladimir Stelmakh, and opposition leader Viktor Yanukovich.

She said the decision on the second tranche will depend on new political realities in the country.

On Tuesday Ukrainian parliament refused to consider the lawbills necessary to secure the second tranche. However, Timoshenko said the government has found a possibility to balance the budgets of the Pension fund and Naftogaz Ukrainy Company by its own resolutions.

In November 2008, the International Monetary Fund approved a decision to allocate a stabilization loan worth US $16.43 billion to Ukraine to maintain confidence in the financial sector and help the country’s economy, which was suffering from the global financial crisis.

At that time, the National Bank of Ukraine received the first tranche of this IMF credit, US $4.5 billion “to maintain the stability of the national currency and recapitalize banks.”

In Washington, Secretary of the Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council Raisa Bogatyreva, who met senior US administration officials, refused to disclose whether she succeeded to secure US economic and financial support. “This is simplification of the question. We have not asked for financial aid. Not all questions can be settled, of course, but we nevertheless hope that we can count on receiving the next loan tranche,” she told Tass on Thursday.

In Kiev sources in the National Bank said the decision on the second tranche will be made during a US visit by National Bank chief Stelmakh next week.



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