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Ukraine Approves Pension Reform To Unfreeze IMF Aid

Ukraine's parliament has approved a pension-reform bill that would gradually raise the retirement age for women from 55 to 60 and increase by 10 years the period during which workers make contributions to their retirement funds.

Deputies approved the bill overnight after a heated, eight-hour debate.

The bill must now be signed by the president to become law.

The unpopular reform, which has sparked angry protests in Kyiv, is key to unfreezing a $15 billion lending program from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

The fund suspended payouts to Ukraine this year after the reform was delayed.

compiled from agency reports