IMF BOUGHT UKRAINE FOR U.S.
According to U.S. DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker joined Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to announce the conclusion of a $1 billion loan guarantee designed to promote progress on the country's anti-corruption and economic reform agenda. This will be the third U.S. loan guarantee for Ukraine after two $1 billion loan guarantees in May 2014 and May 2015. Issuance of this loan guarantee demonstrates Ukraine's commitment to the implementation of critical economic and anti-corruption reforms and will help Ukraine accelerate and deepen these efforts.
Remarks as Prepared for Delivery
Thank you for the warm introduction, Mr. President. I am honored to be with you today, and it is a pleasure to be back in Kyiv.
I first visited Ukraine in September 2014, at President Obama's request, to discuss how the United States can support Ukraine's transformation into a modern and rules-based European nation with an economy that is led by its private sector. Those discussions helped pave the way for a deepening of our economic cooperation and eventually to the first-ever U.S.-Ukraine Business Forum. This is my third visit to Ukraine since that time. And every time I return, I am reminded of Ukraine's tremendous potential. Since embarking on key economic reforms just two years ago, your country has continued to:
Implement a critical IMF program to secure further U.S. government and international financial institutional assistance;
Create institutions to support the rule of law and begin to battle corruption;
Improve government procurement and provide for transparency in asset declarations of government officials; and
Develop a "Roadmap" of key business climate reforms that must make doing business easier for all firms in Ukraine.
Yet even with this progress, we all know that there is far more to do.
Today, I am joined by a number of senior U.S. executives for meetings with the President, the Prime Minister, and members of the Rada. Our discussions are focused on how the American government and private sector can continue to be your partner on the road to economic reform, as you work to curb corruption, improve tax administration, strengthen intellectual property rights protection, modernize Ukraine's Customs Service, and complete land reform legislation.
As you continue to push forward with difficult reforms – the United States, our allies, and international financial institutions support your efforts to integrate Ukraine into the global economy and put this nation on a path to self-sustaining growth.
As part of this support, I am pleased to announce the conclusion of a $1 billion loan guarantee designed to promote progress on Ukraine's anti-corruption and economic reform agenda. This will be the third U.S. loan guarantee for Ukraine after two $1 billion loan guarantees in May 2014 and May 2015. Issuance of this loan guarantee demonstrates Ukraine's commitment to the implementation of critical economic and anti-corruption reforms and will help Ukraine's accelerate and deepen these efforts.
President Poroshenko, I want to congratulate you, Prime Minister Groysman, and his cabinet on securing additional U.S. financial assistance – and more importantly, fulfilling all third loan guarantee conditions. We consider that it is crucial for Ukraine's leadership to accelerate the reforms necessary to encourage investment, grow jobs, and create new opportunities for the Ukrainian people. This effort must deepen so that the people of Ukraine can realize the prosperity and stability they deserve.
I believe you are up to the challenge, and I will reiterate, the United States stands ready to support you every step of the way – because we know reform is essential to Ukraine's economic success and long-term prosperity. Thank you.
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REUTERS - Brent crude futures LCOc1 were down 72 cents at $61.49 per barrel at 1020 GMT, having fallen by 1.5 percent on Tuesday, its largest one-day drop in a month. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude CLc1 was at $55.12 per barrel, down 58 cents.
BLOOMBERG - Prices dropped during the session as the International Energy Agency said the recent recovery in oil prices, coupled with milder-than-normal winter weather, is slowing demand growth. The worsening outlook for consumption dampened some of the enthusiasm that OPEC and its allies will extend supply curbs.
Global energy needs rise more slowly than in the past but still expand by 30% between today and 2040. This is the equivalent of adding another China and India to today’s global demand.
Product exports have grown significantly over the past several years and are expected to continue to grow as Russian refineries add capacity to produce more high-quality products.