Ukraine should initiate talks with Russia over debt restructuring - MinFin

Ukraine should initiate talks on restructuring its debt to Russia itself, the Russian Finance Ministry said

Ukraine should initiate talks on restructuring its debt to Russia itself, the Russian Finance Ministry said.

On Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin, said that Russia is ready to restructure Ukraine's $3 billion in Eurobond debt with payment installments for three years ($1 billion in each year 2016-2018). Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said that the decision should be made in the next three weeks.

Finance Ministry Press Secretary Svetlana Nikitina told reporters on Friday that Russia did not send Ukraine formalized proposals on debt restructuring and should not do it at all.

"We did not send anything and we should not send any formalized proposals to Ukraine because Russia is the lender in this situation. And according to international practices, the debtor should come up with proposals for debt talks, if they understand that they are not able to pay the debt on time," she said.

"According to international practice, the lender is waiting for payments and the debtor is the one who needs to offer talks, if one is not able to make payments. The Finance Ministry is interacting with the IMF, because, firstly, the status of the IMF debt has long been discussed, the fund said that Russia needed to in some way, restructure the debt. At the same time the IMF agreed to with the status of the debt, and we are saying again that this is sovereign debt, and it can not be looked at the same way as commercial debt. Furthermore, the IMF is the international organization which, in fact, forms the program of financial assistance to Ukraine, and the debt problem can only be solved in the framework of this program, because we fully understand that Ukraine does not have means of repaying this debt. Therefore we are waiting for an answer from the IMF," she said.

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