Washington : The World Bank on Wednesday (local time) has stopped all its programs in Russia and Belarus with “immediate effect” in response to Moscow’s military operations in Ukraine.
“The World Bank Group has not approved any new loans to or investments in Russia since 2014. There has also been no new lending approved to Belarus since mid-2020,” the international financial institution said in a statement.
Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine and hostilities against the people of Ukraine, the World Bank Group has stopped all its programs in Russia and Belarus with immediate effect, the statement added.
Meanwhile, World Bank on Tuesday announced that it is preparing a USD 3 billion support package for Ukraine in the coming months, while the IMF also is preparing to provide emergency assistance to the country.
Russian forces launched military operations in Ukraine on February 24, three days after Moscow recognized Ukraine’s breakaway regions – Donetsk and Luhansk – as independent entities. Several countries including the UK, the US, Canada, and the European Union have condemned Russia’s military operations in Ukraine and imposed sanctions on Moscow.
These countries have also promised Ukraine to help with military aid to fight Russia.
The US, Canada and European allies agreed to remove key Russian banks from the interbank messaging system, SWIFT which means Russian banks won’t be able to communicate securely with banks beyond Russia’s borders.