Ukraine aims to cut state debt to 40 per cent of GDP

Ukrainian money hryvnia. The national currency. Corruption in Ukraine

Ukraine’s finance minister, Oksana Markarova, has said that the government wants to reduce Ukraine’s state debt to 40 per cent of the country’s GDP and has set a target for a “deficit-free budget” in the near future, Open4Business Ukraine has reported.

Speaking in an interview with Ukraina TV, Mrs Markarova said that the Ukrainian government’s goal for 2020 is to reduce public debt to 52 per cent of GDP and decrease it “below 40 per cent in two years.”

“This will give us the opportunity of living like European countries,” she continued, noting that “debt itself is not bad” but that the country should borrow money only if there is a need to do so.

She stressed that “Ukraine has always been very unpredictable” when it came to state debt, calling efforts for the debt’s permanent restructuring unfavourable since it would limit the government’s resources.

“We rapidly increased our debt from 2006 to 2008, then it also grew rapidly from 2013 to 2014. We need to move away from this,” the finance minister stressed.

Mrs Markarova expects Ukraine’s budget deficit to reach 3.2 per cent of GDP this year and two per cent in 2020, noting that the government’s aim is a budget without deficit, which would allow it to “absolutely resolve” its debt issues and direct money to important priorities.