The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is close to agreement with Ukraine on financial assistance worth $14-18bn (£8.5-£11bn) over the next two years. An agreement still needs approval by the full board of the IMF. The stand-by arrangement comes at the end of a three-week visit by IMF officials to the country. The deal is expected to unlock a further $27bn in loans for Ukraine from the European Union and the US.
“Following the intense economic and political turbulence of recent months, Ukraine has achieved some stability but faces difficult challenges,” the IMF’s Mission Chief for Ukraine said in a statement. The deal goes hand in hand with a reform programme for Ukraine’s ailing economy. On Wednesday, Ukraine’s interim government agreed to raise gas prices by 50% in its effort to secure the IMF aid package.