KYIV: The United States is transferring an extra billion dollars to Ukraine as it struggles to counter a Russian invasion, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said on Monday.
On a trip to Kiev following a surprise visit by US President Joe Biden last week, Yellen met with President Volodymyr Zelensky and announced the transfer of “an additional amount of over $1.2 billion” to the Ukrainian government.
This will be the first tranche of about $10 billion that the United States will provide in the coming months, she said in a speech in Kiev.
“Our economic support helps the Ukrainian government and critical service providers to be operational under emergency circumstances,” including by paying civil servants, firefighters and teachers, she said.
Germany and the USA will send battle tanks to Ukraine, Russia criticizes the decision
The United States, Ukraine’s key financial and military backer, has provided Kiev with nearly $50 billion in aid over the past year.
After his meeting with Yelen, Zelensky thanked Washington for “strongly supporting us from the first days of this war, not only with weapons, but also financially.”
Ukraine has been suffering endemic graft for years, and allies are pushing for progress so they can keep sending weapons and financial aid.
In her speech, Yellen emphasized the importance of good governance, saying “transparency and accountability will become even more important as Ukraine rebuilds its infrastructure and recovers from the effects of war.”
Yellen said Washington would also press for “more action” from allies such as the International Monetary Fund, whose managing director Kristalina Georgieva visited Kiev last week.
“We expect to see the IMF move quickly to establish an ambitious and fully funded program,” Yellen said.
She also said Washington would focus this year on thwarting Russia’s attempts to evade Western sanctions.
“We will improve coordination with our allies,” Yellen said. “The United States will not hesitate to use our authorities to disrupt entities that help the Kremlin evade our sanctions.
Ukraine’s allies have sought to use the sanctions to stifle Russia’s ability to procure weapons or manufacture them using imported components.