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Ratings Agency Raises Ukraine Outlook

Ratings agency Standard and Poor's (S&P) has raised its outlook for Ukraine to stable from negative, after a multi-billion dollar bailout deal from Russia.

S&P said the cash injection of $15 billion -- about 8 percent of Ukraine's predicted 2014 GDP -- "should cover the government's external financing needs over the next 12 months."

Russian President Vladimir Putin last week agreed after talks with Ukrainian counterpart Viktor Yanukovych to buy $15 billion of Ukrainian government debt and also slash the price Ukraine pays for Russian gas by one-third.

S&P added that "based on our expectations of Russia's support" it no longer expected a devaluation of the Ukrainian hryvnia.

But the agency also warned that the Russian support appeared subject to good diplomatic relations between the two ex-Soviet states being maintained. \

Based on reporting by AFP and Interfax