IMF mission to begin work in Kyiv on Nov 12
An International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission led by Ron van Rooden will start work in Kyiv on November 12, according to IMF Resident Representative for Ukraine Jerome Vacher.
"An International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission led by Ron van Rooden will be working in Kyiv starting November 12. Following initial technical discussions completed during September 22 – October 2, the mission will continue policy discussions with the Ukrainian authorities in the context of the second review of the Fund-supported economic reform program," Vacher said in an official statement.
As reported, the four-year Extended Fund Facility (EFF) program worth SDR 12.348 billion (about $17.04 billion at the current rate) was opened in March 2015. In March 2015, the IMF gave Ukraine a first tranche worth about $5 billion under the program. Of the amount, about $2.7 billion was given to the government to prop up the national budget, the remaining funds were transferred to the NBU.
The EFF originally foresaw a quarterly review of the program, and allocation of three more tranches worth SDR 1.18 billion (about $1.63 billion) in 2015 and a decrease in quarterly tranches in 2016-2018 to SDR 0.44 billion ($0.61 billion).
The allocation of the third disbursement to Ukraine under the EFF has been delayed. "The IMF has left because we're not ready to tell them how to balance [spending cuts with in the tax reform]," Ukrainian Finance Minister Natalie Jaresko said after the IMF mission's visit in September. In her words, the fourth tranche will not arrive this year.
The Finance Ministry has already prepared proposals to reduce budget expenses by UAH 60 billion, however, they should be approved by the government in order to be tabled in parliament.
According to Jaresko, other issues included in the talks with the IM F are further resolute steps to fight corruption, and a number of reforms in other sectors.