IMF confident US$40b package for Ukraine will come together

[WASHINGTON] The International Monetary Fund on Thursday said it is confident Ukraine should get an overall US$40 billion financing package to support its economy, without providing details about the breakdown of funds.

The IMF last week said its staff had reached an agreement with the Ukraine government on a new economic program with about US$17.5 billion coming from the Fund and additional resources from the international community.

The program is meant to support the economy of the former Soviet republic, which is on the brink of bankruptcy after a year of political upheaval and bitter conflict with pro-Russian separatists.

The IMF's board is set to vote on Kiev's financing package this month or in early March. But the Fund declined to share details of where the money would be coming from and said it had not made any assumptions about a debt restructuring for private creditors.

"What we need by the time of the board meeting is a meaningful sense that the financing package is coming together in the right direction," IMF spokesman Gerry Rice said. "We have confidence that the US$40 billion financing package will come together," he added.

Ukraine's finance ministry has said the financing package would include up to US$15 billion from debt talks with creditors, which are expected to start next month.

But the Institute of International Finance, a global financial industry group, said it was concerned the government was already assuming how much it could get from bondholders before discussions had even started.



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