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IMF Considers Policy Change That Would Help Ukraine

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) says it will soon make a decision on changing its lending policy in a move that would aid Ukraine in a debt dispute with Russia.

The fund is discussing “reforms that would allow the fund to lend in the presence of arrears to official bilateral creditors in carefully circumscribed circumstances," IMF spokesman Gerry Rice said on October 29.

Such a change may allow Kyiv to keep receiving tranches of a $17.5 billion IMF loan even if it misses payment on a $3 billion bond due to Russia on December 20.

Current policy prohibits the IMF from lending to a country that goes into arrears on official debt.

Ukraine needs to restructure its debt as a condition of the IMF loan, but Russia has refused to accept new terms.

Based on reporting by and Reuters

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