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BRUSSELS, January 27. /TASS/. The EU Economic and Financial Affairs Council has approved granting Ukraine €1.8 billion as macro-financial assistance by the European Commission, which needs urgent implementation, according to Michelle Sapene, the French Minister of Finance.
This measure would be the third financial assistance step requested by Kiev, and the EU is ready to support Ukraine in further reforms, said Valdis Dombrovskis, the European Commission Deputy Chairperson at the press conference.
If the program is approved by the European Parliament and the EU Council, it can be carried out in three tranches during the period of 2015 and the beginning of 2016, €600 million each.
According to TASS' European diplomatic source, some of the Ministers insisted on increasing the additional macro-financial assistance to Ukraine to €2.5 billion.
Last year the EC implemented two financial assistance programs which gave Ukraine around €1.8 billion as subsidized loans. Subsequently, Kiev requested an additional sum of €2 billion.
On January 8, 2015, the European Commission announced its readiness to grant Ukraine further macro-financial assistance in the amount of €1.8 billion as "medium-term loans." As the EC emphasized, the new program of financial assistance to Kiev would be "linked to certain reform actions." As soon as the decision to grant Ukraine macro-financial assistance is approved, the country will have to continue the current cooperation program with the IMF and to implement financial and economic policy harmonized in a joint memorandum of understanding to be signed by the EC and Ukraine, as a provision of the assistance.
The EC envisages "further fiscal consolidation, continuation of the comprehensive reforms in the energy and banking sectors, as well as improving overall macroeconomic management." According to the EC, "It will also be important to strengthen economic governance, transparency and pursue judicial reforms and the fight against corruption in order to improve conditions for business activity and sustainable growth."