At a time when Russia is nearly suing Ukraine — thus eroding Tymoshenko’s reassurance that neither side would sue the other — Tymoshenko decides to borrow some money from Russia.
Instead of heeding the call to balance the budget, voiced by President Yushchenko and Finance Minister Pynzenyk, she takes her business elsewhere.
On Thursday, she sent a delegation to Moscow angling for a loan of $5B at an interest rate of LIBOR +8 to +9% for a period of 5 to 7 years, Dzerkalo Tyzhnia reports. Ukrayinska Pravda obtained a copy of the delegation's directives.
In Ukraine, the buck never stops. In Russia, they made big bucks during the oil boom. Like the IMF, they know what they want, and their interests never stop with the interest rate.
As a condition of granting the loan, Moscow requests the following:
- Ratification of the so called “zero option” agreement whereby Russia assumes liability for all debts owed by the USSR while the other former Soviet republics abandon their respective claims on assets owned by the USSR
- Resolution of disputes concerning Ukraine’s claims on Soviet property abroad and Russia’s claims on property in Ukraine
- Recognition of debts owed by Ukrainian enterprises to Vneshekonombank as government debt
Is that too much to ask? Tymoshenko doesn’t think so.
So there she is, beating a path to Putin’s door, trading favors, and doing whatever it takes to get the presidency — whatever the cost.
It must have been the missing link in her Ukrainian Breakthrough program.
Tymoshenko has admitted to getting Russia's approval for the loan, but has denied accepting the conditions listed above.
"It's not true," she said, despite the “zero option” being clearly stated as No. 11 in the directives.