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Official says IMF recognizing Ukraine's debt to Russia does not change anything for Russia

December 17, 2015, 11:01 UTC+3
Russia’s Deputy Finance Minister Sergey Storchak expressed confidence that any disputes can be resolved out of court
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© Alexandr Demyanchuk/TASS

BEIJING, December 17. /TASS/. The IMF recognizing Ukraine's debt to Russia does not change anything for the Russian side, Russia’s Deputy Finance Minister Sergey Storchak told journalists Thursday.

"For us, this does not change the situation. It changes the situation, if they want it of course, for the Ukrainian authorities," he said.

Storchak said that the Ukrainian authorities have an opportunity to review the list of debt that need to be restructured, which was approved this spring. The list, according to Storchak, includes Russian loan along with the debt of the private sector.

"Once they remove our loan from the list, they can go further in terms of working with us on the option, which requires debt restructuring," the Deputy Minister said.

Storchak also expressed confidence that any disputes can be resolved out of court.

At the same time, the Deputy Minister did not rule out that Ukraine could announce a moratorium on the payment of the debt to Russia this week.

As TASS reported earlier, Ukraine’s inclusion of $3 bln debt to Russia into the list of bonds to be restructured may challenge further implementation of the IMF lending program in Ukraine, Ukraine’s ex-minister of economy Viktor Suslov said on Wednesday.

"If Ukraine continues pursuing such a policy contrary to IMF [Kiev does not recognize Russian debt as a state-to-state one and insists on its restructuring], then it will finally get a default and may have problems in respect of the IMF cooperation program," Suslov said. "These $3 bln should not be unilaterally included into the list of bonds to be restructured but Ukraine did it," he added.

Ukraine has to repay $3 bln debt to Russia and make an interest payment of $75 mln by December 20, 2015. Kiev views Russian Eurobonds as a private debt. Moscow insists on their intergovernmental status and awaits timely repayment.

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