KIEV, June 25. (Reuters) – Ukraine has signed a $ 350 million loan agreement with the World Bank to help the country mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and support economic recovery, Prime Minister Denis Shmygal said Friday.
“The funds will be used to develop the economy in the context of a pandemic, to social support, as well as to strengthen state institutions,” Shmygal wrote on Twitter.
The government is forecasting growth of around 4% in 2021, after falling by 4% in 2020, when restrictions were introduced to combat the spread of the new coronavirus.
Earlier, in June, Kiev lifted almost all restrictions after a significant decrease in the daily number of new infections.
But the central bank says the slow vaccination of Ukraine’s 41 million people and the possibility of new restrictions pose a high risk to economic growth.
Ukraine has recorded over 2.2 million cases of coronavirus and more than 52,000 deaths related to COVID, with only 1.4 million people receiving the first dose of the vaccine and about 490,000 were fully vaccinated.
The World Bank, Ukraine’s major international partner, has committed nearly $ 14 billion to over 80 projects and programs since the country joined the bank in 1992. (Report by Natalia Zinets; editing by Barbara Lewis)