Belarus hoping to receive third tranche of EFSD loan in December

The Belarusian finance ministry is hoping to receive the third tranche of a loan from the Eurasian Fund for Stabilization and Development (EFSD) before the end of this year, First Deputy Minister Maksim Yermalovich told reporters in Minsk on Friday.

“It is possible that the third tranche of the EFSD loan will arrive in December,” Mr. Yermalovich said. “I personally see no problems with receiving new tranches of the EFSD loan.”

According to Mr. Yermalovich, the finance ministry is also planning to issue Eurobonds.

“The situation in the [global] market is quire favorable,” he said. “However, it is difficult to project exactly when new Eurobonds will be issued.”

He did not rule out of the possibility of making new borrowings in the domestic market too.

“We will follow the situation in the domestic market. New borrowings are possible, but we will not borrow large sums of money,” Mr. Yermalovich said.

The funds will be used for paying off old debts, he added.

Finance Minister Uladzimir Amaryn told reporters in Minsk on October 3 that the ministry was hoping to receive the third tranche of the EFSD loan before the end of that month.

Mr. Amaryn said that the $300-million installment would be provided on condition the EFSD was happy with Belarus’ fulfillment of the loan requirements as of September 1.

Belarus formally requested financial assistance from the EFSD in March 2015. The government initially wanted to borrow $3 billion from the Russian-controlled fund, but the requested amount was later reduced to $2 billion. The EFSD board delayed a decision on the loan request for months, warning that Minsk had to display its commitment to economic reform.

The EFSD board approved the loan for Belarus in March 2016.

The country received the first tranche of the loan, $500 million, on March 30 and the second tranche, $300 million, on July 29.