It seems Russia won't have to wait too long for the billions that Ukraine owes it for energy supplies past, present, and future pre-billings. Bloomberg reports that:
- *IMF STAFF SAID TO BACK $17B UKRAINE LOAN
- *IMF STAFF SAID TO SEEK APRIL 30 BOARD MEETING ON UKRAINE LOAN
The always-accurate staff at the IMF project a mere 5% contraction in Ukraine's economy (so that means more like 15%).
As Bloomberg reports,
International Monetary Fund staff endorsed a $17 billion loan to Ukraine to help the government pay its bills amid a projected economic contraction of 5 percent this year, according to government officials who have seen the recommendations.
The staff’s report was delivered to members of the IMF’s 24-seat board late yesterday, according to the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss internal documents. The staff proposed an April 30 board meeting to consider the loan package, they said.
Conny Lotze, a spokeswoman for the IMF, declined to comment.
After weeks of talks with the government in Kiev, IMF staff concluded that Ukraine needs financing from the fund that’s at the higher end of the $14 billion to $18 billion range initially announced. The IMF loan will clear the way for additional aid from the European Union and other donors.
We await the small-print to see just how much is "allowed" to be spent on paying bills to Russia vs paying off interest on bonds due to Western banks...