The International Monetary Fund has approved an $867 million loan to Ukraine to support the government’s 1996 reform programs. The loan will be disbursed in monthly installments on the basis of monthly monitoring of the government’s fulfillment of program targets, as agreed with the IMF. The main goals include: reducing inflation of the karbovanets to a monthly rate of 1 to 2 percent by the end of 1996, from the current 2.4 percent; reducing the budget deficit to 3.5 percent of GDP by the end of the year, from 5 percent in 1995; further cuts in state subsidies to enterprises; acceleration of privatization; and further liberalization of foreign trade. The loan is part of a $1.5 billion credit line which the IMF had approved earlier, but froze in late 1995 because of what it regarded as slippage in Ukraine’s reform efforts. Acknowledging Kiev’s recent "corrective measures" and first successes in slowing the rate of inflation, the IMF is now prepared to add $200 million to the original 1.5 billion. (Western agencies, Interfax-Ukraine, May 10 & 11)
Turkish Clarifications on the Ceyhan Oil Pipeline Project.