Ukraine’s Minister of Economic Development and Trade Aivaras Abromavicius and the World Bank’s Director for Belarus, Moldova, and Ukraine Qimiao Fan have signed a loan agreement under which the World Bank will provide USD 500 million to Ukraine for accelerating reforms in the country, the Interfax Ukraine news agency reports.

"It is USD 500 million in financial support for strategic and institutional reforms," Abromavicius said after the signing ceremony.

According to him, the money is intended to improve the country’s public-sector governance, business environment, energy sector, and assistance to the low-income section of the population.

The credit was provided for 16 years with a seven-year grace period at variable interest rates, which is currently 1.25%. “We are helping Ukraine to implement an urgent set of measures, which will be essential to stabilize the economy, provide quality services to all Ukrainians and return the country to a sustainable growth path,” said Qimiao Fan.

According to him, the World Bank is currently preparing another loan of USD 500 million, and documents for provision of this loan will be forwarded to the World Bank’s board of directors in September.

According to the World Bank, this operation is part of the World Bank Group’s broader financial support package announced in February this year, which aims to provide Ukraine with up to USD 2 billion in 2015.

The USD-750-million First Multi-Sector Development Policy Loan was disbursed in May 2014.