The European Bank for Reconstruction & Development (EBRD) has approved two financial packages for Ukraine totalling €350 million.

The funds include €200 million to support the Pan-European Corridors road project. EBRD said the money would allow completion of rehabilitation to road approaches to the Ukrainian capital Kiev, including sections of M05 Kiev-Odessa and M01 Kiev-Chernigiv roads, which form part of the key Pan-European Corridor IX.

It said the project would also cover sections of N01 (Kiev-Znamenka) and R02 (Kiev-Ivankiv) roads, as well as the reconstruction of the Zhytomyr bypass. EBRD said part of the loan would also be used to finance the first performance-based road maintenance contracts in Ukraine, together with road safety improvements.

The bank said a further €150 million would support a framework facility to help Ukrainian companies overcome difficulties and constraints caused by the financial crisis, and the reduced availability of external funding.

Unrest

Ukraine has seen unrest in recent months, following a decision by President Viktor Yanukovych in November last year to pull out of a deal with the EU.

This decision sparked mass protests, which eventually led to Yanukovych leaving the country. He was replaced by interim Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk, but pro-Russian forces have since taken over the Crimea region of Ukraine.

The EBRD said it was the largest financial investor in Ukraine. As of 1 April, 2014, the Bank had committed €8.9 billion through 326 projects in the country.

The bank said it was now ready to step up and broaden the scope of its investments in Ukraine. It added that it would also resume its lending operations in the sovereign sector, once Ukraine’s agreement for a macro-economic stabilisation programme with the International Monetary Fund had been approved.

EBRD said the release of the funds supporting the Pan-European Corridors road project was subject to this condition.

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