UKRAINE HOPES TO IMPROVE INVESTMENT RATING. Ukraine hopes for an improvement in its investment rating if the IMF grants the country a $2.5 billion loan, Reuters reported on 15 July, quoting presidential adviser Valeriy Litvytskyy. On 13 July, Moody's Investors Service announced it is downgrading Ukraine's credit rating. Moody's said if Ukraine is unable to borrow from financial markets or fails to obtain the IMF loan, the country will run out of foreign currency reserves by the end of this year. Litvytskyy said the IMF praised economic decrees signed recently by President Leonid Kuchma and noted progress in the country's fiscal reform. An IMF mission's visit to Kyiv from 23-31 July will be crucial for the fund's decision on the loan, he added. JM