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BRUSSELS, June 13. /ITAR-TASS/. The European Union has provided the first €250 million tranche to Ukraine. The tranche has been allocated in compliance with the agreement, signed by the representatives of the European Commission and Ukraine in Brussels on May 13.
The first tranche is one of the EU many steps to assist to the Ukrainian government in carrying out short-term tasks, the EU said in a press release circulated on Friday.
Macroeconomic aid to Ukraine
On May 13, the European Union and Ukraine signed the memorandum to provide €1 billion macroeconomic aid. The memorandum was signed by Ukrainian Minister of Economy Oleksandr Shlapak and European Commission Vice-President Sim Kallas. The funding was allocated to support economic stabilization and structural reforms in Ukraine.
On March 5, the European Commission approved a program to give Ukraine €11 billion ($15 billion) in loans and grants over the coming years to help stabilize its economy. It will help support Kiev while it negotiates a broad bailout program with the International Monetary Fund.
The package foresees helping to modernize Ukraine's gas transit system and providing technical assistance ranging from judicial reform to assistance in preparing elections, the Commission said. The package also calls for steps to accelerate achieving visa-free travel for Ukrainians to the 28-nation bloc.
Stabilizing Ukraine's economy
The EU package is "designed to assist a committed, inclusive and reforms-oriented government in rebuilding a stable and prosperous future for Ukraine," EC President Jose Manuel Barroso said.
“The situation in Ukraine is a test of our capability and resolve to stabilize our neighbourhood and to provide new opportunities for many, not just a few,” Barroso told reporters in Brussels. “We need to be up to this challenge.”
The timeline over which the EU funds and loans would be disbursed varied from a few hundred million euros this year to multi-billions between now and 2020. The details were left vague because the situation in Ukraine is still uncertain and negotiations between Kiev and the IMF are ongoing, EU officials said.