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The former International Monetary Fund (IMF) executive and now analyst at the American Enterprise Institute says “it is all too likely that the IMF is lowballing Ukraine’s needs in much the same way as it did in its Greek bailout programme.” He says the estimates are growing now the same as in the past. “Last May, at the time it launched its Ukraine lending programme, the IMF estimated that Ukraine might need around $35 billion in official external support. Today, some six months later, it is estimating that Ukraine might need around $55 billion in official external financing.”
Lachman says, “One would have thought that this question would have been the main topic under discussion during [Ukrainian President Petro] Poroshenko’s U.S. visit. If Kiev “might need at least an additional $19 billion of external official support to see it through 2015, the White House has agreed to provide Ukraine around an additional $50 million in assistance. This leaves unanswered the basic question as to from where the remaining $18.95 billion is to be obtained,” the analyst says.
Meanwhile, the IMF existing programme for Ukraine is estimated at some $17 billion for the next two years. IMF Communications Director Gerry Rice told reporters at a briefing on Thursday that Kiev had not officially asked for this programmes revision, although it is the key part of the international assistance package on the tentative amounts of which Lachman commented.
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