Ukrainian MPs approve banking law needed for IMF loans at first reading

KIEV (Reuters) - Ukraine’s parliament on Monday approved at the first reading a banking law needed to qualify for new loans from the International Monetary Fund.

The bill, which would prevent former owners of banks declared insolvent from regaining their assets, must be approved at the second reading and signed by the president to come into force.

President Volodymyr Zelenskiy had urged lawmakers to pass banking legislation and lift a ban on land sales - the final hurdles to an IMF deal - or risk plunging the country into default due to the economic shock from the coronavirus epidemic.

Reporting by Natalia Zinets; writing by Pavel Polityuk; editing by Matthias Williams