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Ukraine-Russia Loan Talks Said to Be for as Much as $15 Billion

Published: December 16, 2013 | 12:57 pm
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Ukraine is in talks with Russia for a loan of as much as $15 billion as President Viktor Yanukovych prepares to head to Moscow after a weekend of mass protest in Kiev, two people familiar with the negotiations said.

The two sides are also discussing the price Ukraine pays for the natural gas it buys from its eastern neighbor, said the people who asked not to be identified because the talks haven’t been completed. Ukraine may receive as much as $5 billion this year, one of the people said. Russia’s finance ministry confirmed that the sides were negotiating a loan, without further details. Vitaliy Lukyanenko, Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov’s spokesman, declined to comment.

Yanukovych is scheduled to meet his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Moscow tomorrow as the economy struggles with its third recession since 2008 and foreign-currency reserves at a seven-year low. The country needs at least $10 billion to avoid default, First Deputy Prime Minister Serhiy Arbuzov said Dec. 7. The government has failed to reach an deal over a $15 billion facility with the International Monetary Fund, disagreeing over energy subsidies.

Source: Business Week

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