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Ukrainian National Bank's Deputy Takes Over As Hontareva Quits


Ukrainian National Bank Governor Valeria Hontareva (right) and First Deputy Governor Yakiv Smoliy attend a news conference in Kyiv on April 10.

Ukraine's central bank says its deputy governor, Yakiv Smoliy, will temporarily take charge on May 11 as Governor Valeria Hontareva will step down that day.

Hontareva, a reformist who won praise from the West, submitted a letter of resignation to President Petro Poroshenko on April 10.

Hontareva took charge of the National Bank of Ukraine (NBU) in 2014, after Russia seized Crimea and with Ukraine in the throes of a conflict with Russia-backed separatists.

Her departure leaves Poroshenko with one fewer ally in power at a time when lenders are already questioning Ukraine's ability to follow through on promised reforms.

Hontareva's efforts to clean up Ukraine's financial sector irked tycoons who critics say have treated the country's banks like their private coffers.

She also came under fire from some ordinary Ukrainians who blamed her for losses they suffered after she was appointed to follow the International Monetary Fund's (IMF) advice to partially abandon state support for the hryvnya currency.

Based on reporting by Reuters and UNIAN
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