White House to Commit $220 million to Supporting Ukraine
The White House plans to commit $220 million to Ukraine in support of economic, political, and energy reforms, Vice President Biden said in a meeting with Ukraine's Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman Wednesday.
The Vice President also expressed deep concern about the rise of separatists in Eastern Ukraine, supported by Russia, urging Ukraine to fully implement the Minsk agreements, a cease-fire accord designed to end fighting between Ukraine’s government and the country’s pro-Russian rebels in the east.
Biden also assured Groysman that sanctions against Russia would not be lifted until it fully implemented the accord.
Since Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine, the U.S. and EU have imposed several rounds of asset freezes, travel bans and other penalties on Russia.
Stocks and US Dollar Dive in Tokyo Trading
Stocks and the dollar took a hammering in Tokyo Thursday after Japan's central bankers kept monetary policy steady.
"Japan's economy is likely to expand moderately as a trend," the central bank's governor, Harukiko Kuroda, told reporters following the market close.
Although the Bank of Japan (BOJ) inaction was widely expected it still sent the Japanese currency soaring. The yen has recently emerged as a safe haven for jittery investors amid concern about the U.S. economy and the increasing chances of a British exit from the European Union in the referendum next Thursday.
The yen rose more than one percent against the U.S. dollar in Asia trading Thursday. In late afternoon trading in Asia the greenback fell into the 103 yen range, a level not seen since 2014.
A government spokesman in Tokyo characterized the yen's rise as too rapid and speculative and said officials are keeping a close watch on the currency market.