JRL NEWSWATCH: “Ukraine oligarch urges Volodymyr Zelensky to default on debt; Concern grows over Igor Kolomoisky’s influence on the novice president” – Financial Times/ Max Seddon

International Monetary Fund Logo Over Ukraine Flag

“… Zelensky should … reject[] the [IMF] austerity programme and default[] on … external debt, according to his contentious oligarch supporter[] Igor Kolomoisky … [a suggestion that] will ring alarm bells with … western backers even though … Zelensky … said he would stick to the terms of Ukraine’s $3.9bn bailout. Concern among Ukrainians and western officials about … Kolomoisky’s influence over the novice president was heightened after the billionaire returned to Kiev … and his former personal lawyer was appointed … Zelensky’s chief of staff. … Ukraine needs IMF loans … under a standby arrangement, to service … external debt[,] … 60 per cent of [GDP] ….”

Payments reportedly are expected to peak in 2019 and 2020.

Kolomoisky also owns the  television channel that featured comedian Zelensky as a TV star playing a fictional president.

Click here for: “Ukraine oligarch urges Volodymyr Zelensky to default on debt; Concern grows over Igor Kolomoisky’s influence on the novice president” – Financial Times/ Max Seddon

Mariyinsky Palace file photo, adapted from image at cia.gov