Brussels, 20 May 1997 (RFE/RL) - The European Commission today announced its approval of technical assistance programs for Ukraine and Kyrgyzstan, within the "TACIS" program framework for 1997.
The stated objective of the program is to support and accelerate the transition to a market economy. The programs for 1997 will be in the form of non-repayable grants amounting to about $30 million for Ukraine and about $8 million for Kyrgyzstan.
Our correspondent reports the program for Ukraine is focused mainly on support for economic reform and developing the private sector. Energy and environment-protection programs are also funded.
Structural and institutional reform is the largest item on the 1997 EU "TACIS" program for Kyrgyzstan. Improvement to the country's infrastructure and support for the agriculture industry also receive substantial funding.