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Ukraine ready to pursue against Russia in court over debt — PM

December 09, 2015, 20:40 UTC+3
Earlier on Wednesday Russia’s President Vladimir Putin instructed the Finance Ministry to take Ukraine to court for failure to pay debt on bonds
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Ukraine’s Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk

Ukraine’s Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk

© AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert

KIEV, December 9. /TASS/. Ukraine’s Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said Ukraine is ready to pursue against Russia in court over its $3 bln debt.

"If Russia files a suit against Ukraine we’re ready to pursue in court fully armed," PM said at a government meeting, once again adding that Kiev will not provide better terms to Moscow than those to international creditors on its debt restructuring.

Earlier on Wednesday Russia’s President Vladimir Putin instructed the Finance Ministry to take Ukraine to court for failure to pay debt on bonds. "File a suit then," Putin told Finance Minister Anton Siluanov, when speaking at a meeting with cabinet members.

"It is strange. If they (western partners) are so confident in the solvency of the country (Ukraine) for the next year they could have taken part in sharing those risks within 4 years. I don’t understand it," President said.

Siluanov told Putin that European officials had unofficially said that they would not agree to restructuring of Ukraine’s debt under their guarantees. They did not give any official answers. "In a letter from the (US) Secretary of the Treasury they made it clear that such guarantees cannot be granted," Siluanov said.

In mid-November Russian President Vladimir Putin said Moscow had offered Ukraine to repay its $3 bln debt by $1 bln annual installments in 2016-2018. Putin stressed that Russia offered not only a restructuring but also better terms compared with those asked by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Russia had asked for guarantees on Ukraine’s debt from either the government of the United States or from the European Union, or from one of international financial institutions.

Last week Russia’s Finance Ministry received an official refusal from the US government to provide guarantees on Ukraine’s debt.

In December 2013, the presidents of Russia and Ukraine, Vladimir Putin and Viktor Yanukovych, agreed that Moscow would grant Kiev a credit worth $15 bln through the placement of Ukrainian securities. Under the program bonds for 3 bln dollars were placed on the Irish Stock Exchange on December 20, 2013. Russia purchased the bonds using the funds from its National Welfare Fund.

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