REUTERS Governor of the National Bank of Ukraine (NBU) Yakiv Smolii says the Ukrainian delegation continues negotiations on a new long-term program of cooperation with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Ukraine&#39;s key lender. "The first meeting with the IMF has taken place today. Top officials from [Ukraine&#39;s] finance and economy ministries spoke with IMF [First] Deputy Managing Director David Lipton. Negotiations on a new long-term cooperation program are under way," he wrote on Twitter on October 17, commenting on the posted photos from Washington, where the Ukrainian delegation participates in the IMF-World Bank annual meeting. Smolii also mentioned another important meeting with Cyril Muller, World Bank Vice President for Europe and Central Asia. Read alsoIMF expects hryvnia to strengthen against dollar at year-end According to Smolii, the priorities of Ukraine and the World Bank coincide with regard to purging of Ukraine&#39;s banking sector from non-performing loans as one of the necessary steps to revive business lending. As UNIAN reported, a recent IMF assessment mission worked in Kyiv from September 12 to September 26. Following, the mission&#39;s work, the IMF said that discussion of a new three-year Extended Fund Facility (EFF) program for Ukraine would continue in the coming weeks The National Bank of Ukraine estimated the potential volume of the new program at between US$5 billion and US$10 billion and predicted the first disbursement worth US$2 billion to be carried out before the end of the year. Ukrainian Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk says the Ukrainian delegation to the United States will continue negotiations with the IMF regarding the new three-year program, the launch of which is expected this year.