Ukraine’s leaders got lucky when the International Monetary Fund lent another $1 billion, bringing to almost half the $17.5 billion in contemplated credits through 2018, even though the nation only fulfilled five out of 14 structural reforms. The international lender of last resort is the most powerful check on the abuses, corruption and impunity of Ukraine’s leaders. It must get tougher on Ukraine’s leaders before lending any more money.
Here are the five conditions that Ukraine met: 2017 low-deficit state budget, resolution of banks that do not meet capital requirements, full cost recovery prices for energy, reduced energy consumption, filing of 2015 e-declarations for public officials.
The list of unmet conditions is long and serious: collection of PrivatBank’s massive bad loans, pension reform, civil service reform, introduction of agricultural land sales, creation of an anti-corruption court, adjustments to energy subsidies, centralized database for social assistance payments, greater powers for the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine, and others.
The IMF needs to take a harder line on Ukraine’s recalcitrant leaders.