A mission from the IMF will arrive in Kyiv today to evaluate Ukraine’s performance on key reforms ahead of a $750 million loan.
The payment is part of a $5 billion loan package intended to help Ukraine cope with the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. In response to the IMF’s payment conditions, Ukraine passed sweeping reforms of the judiciary which will give international legal experts a decisive vote in court judgments. The IMF hopes that this reform will curb deep-seated corruption in Ukraine’s courts, which has been a major hindrance to foreign investment. Although the reform has passed the legislature, recent protestations from Ukraine’s Council of Judges have stalled progress. The IMF and the Ukrainian government will need to solidify the reforms to secure the loan by early December.
By fulfilling IMF demands of reforming the judiciary, as well as other sectors including the central bank, Ukraine is moving closer to meeting the expectations of its European and transatlantic partners. Should President Zelensky succeed in his campaign to clean Ukraine of corruption, NATO and the EU may be more willing to deepen security and economic ties. With increasing Russian aggression in the region, this opportunity could be critical.
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Rob is an Analyst on the Current Developments team. As a researcher, he specializes in global governance and climate politics, as well as South Asian geopolitics.