The International Monetary Fund approved a new tranche of aid to Ukraine and extended a $5 billion loan program by six months as the country pledged to progress in implementing reforms, Bloomberg News reported. The program “aims to help the authorities address the effects of the Covid-19 shock, sustain the economic recovery, and move ahead on important structural reforms to reduce key vulnerabilities,” the Washington-based lender said in a statement on its website Monday. Ukrainian authorities are able to draw the equivalent of about $699 million through the extension of the arrangement, the IMF said. They agreed to return to fiscal policies that will enable debt sustainability, and pledged to safeguard central bank independence, tackle corruption and work on judicial reform. The approval follows the IMF’s resumption of the program, which was frozen for more than a year because of a lack of progress toward reforms needed to fight graft and ensuring the independence of the central bank. Read more.