The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development will commit up to €3 billion over 2022-2023 to help Ukraine’s businesses and economy keep functioning.
On a visit to Kyiv, EBRD President Odile Renaud-Basso told Ukraine’s leader Volodymyr Zelenskyy of the Bank’s determination to support Ukraine while it defends itself against Russia’s aggression.
Since the invasion began in February, the EBRD has committed more than €1 billion and aims to triple that figure by the end of 2023. Its primary focus will be to support the ‘real’ economy – maintaining energy and food security, restoring rail infrastructure, and supporting the pharmaceutical industry.
In their meeting, President Zelenskyy highlighted the damage to the country’s infrastructure and said the Russians had intensified targeting electricity generation and distribution.
EBRD investment has already been made into Ukraine’s electricity companies, as well as providing up to €500m liquidity support for the country’s main gas supplier. Discussions are also underway to scale up funding for urgent repairs of the electricity grid and support municipal authorities in Kyiv, Lviv and Dnipro. EBRD investments are backed by donors or guarantors from countries including the US, and other EU and G7 countries. Norway recently pledged €200m in support.
President Zelenskyy thanked the EBRD for its support, and President Renaud-Basso responded by expressing her admiration for the courage and determination of the Ukrainian people.
The Bank’s President was accompanied on her two-day visit by Vice President, Banking, Alain Pilloux and the Managing Director for Eastern Europe and the Caucasus, Matteo Patrone. The group held other meetings with Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal, the Mayor of Kyiv, Vitali Klitschko, and the new Governor of the National Bank of Ukraine, Andrii Pyshnyi. They also had talks with business leaders including the heads of the energy company Ukrenergo, the rail company Ukrzaliznytsia, as well as Privatbank and Dragon Capital.
After her visit, President Renaud-Basso said: “I was keen to meet President Zelenskyy to express our solidarity and support for Ukraine in person. He left me in no doubt about the scale of assistance needed, and the EBRD is determined to do all it can to play its part.
“The EBRD is the largest institutional investor in Ukraine and has links there stretching back 30 years. It is appalling to see the damage done by Russia’s invasion, and yet also moving to see the resilience of the population. I said it on February 24th, and I will keep saying it – we stand by Ukraine.”