Monday, August 15

Zelensky: “Rebuilding Ukraine means rebuilding everything that makes humans human”

“It is not a project of one nation, but a common task of the entire democratic world, of all countries that can say they are civilized”, This is how the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, described it at the Conference on the Recovery of Ukraine of Lugano (Switzerland) the task of rebuilding Ukraine once the war unleashed by the Russian invasion is over: “Rebuilding Ukraine means rebuilding the principles of life, the space of life, rebuilding everything that makes humans human. Of course, this implies large-scale construction; great financing and a colossal investment. And, of course, it implies the absolutely new level of security in our entire country, which will be forced to continue to live side by side with Russia.”

In this context, the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, announced: “Chancellor [alemán, Olaf] Scholz and I, in close collaboration with international partners, will organize a high-level international conference after the summer: we want to bring together the brightest minds and leading global experts on reconstruction to ensure that this commitment is done in the right way, which will give more confidence to investors: The money not only serves a good cause, it will be, above all, spent efficiently and effectively, with maximum impact for the people of Ukraine. The Kremlin’s goal is the military, political and economic destruction of Ukraine. He wants to undermine the very existence of Ukraine as a state. We cannot and will not allow this to happen.”

Von der Leyen has recognized that “reforms must go hand in hand with investment”, and that “the scale of destruction is staggering”, in addition to the fact that the costs increase every day of this senseless war“. And he added: “While we work to help Ukraine win this war, we must also ensure that Ukraine wins the peace.”

“The challenges are enormous”, said the head of the Community Executive, “but they are not insurmountable. Ukraine can come out of this war on the path of a stronger and more modern country. With a modernized judiciary. stronger institutions. And a solid track record in the fight against corruption. But also greener, with a more digital and more resilient economy. This is the country that so many young Ukrainians are dreaming of and for which they are fighting.”

Von der Leyen has stated: “The task before us is colossal, as President Zelensky says. This is why the European Commission has proposed to the Ukrainian government a reconstruction platform to map investment needs, coordinate action, channel resources, and support an ambitious reform agenda.”

“Europe has a special responsibility and a strategic interest to be at the side of Ukraine in each”, said Von der Leyen: “Ukraine wants to be part of our European Union. And we want Ukraine to become a member. We will do everything we can to support these efforts. Because the path to a stronger Ukraine and the path to European integration are the same. Since the start of the war, the European Union has mobilized around €6.2 billion in financial support. And more will come. We will be substantially involved in reconstruction in the medium and long term. We can never match the sacrifices that Ukrainians are making every day, they are giving their lives to turn their vision into reality. They are fighting for a free and independent Ukraine. They are fighting for the respect of international laws and values. His fight is our fight too. And while we work to help Ukraine win this war, we must also make sure Ukraine wins the peace.”

The Ukrainian president has pointed out that “all crises” are Russian responsibility: “The inflation crisis, the food crisis, the energy crisis, the migration crisis… And the cruelest of its manifestations, the aggression against our State. Why does Russia need to bomb hospitals? It is the manifestation that it is capable of destroying Ukraine’s opportunity to have a civilized life. Russia is proving that the Ukrainians will not even be able to cure or give birth to children. It is not just a bombing. It is an ideological confrontation. The terrorist state hopes that this destruction will become proof of the alleged inability of the democratic system to give people at least a normal life.

The European Commission proposed on Friday a new macro-financial assistance (MFA) operation worth 1,000 million euros in favor of Ukraine as the first part of the exceptional macro-financial assistance package of up to 9,000 million euros announced on May 18.

Friday’s €1 billion will complement support already provided by the EU, which includes an emergency macro-financial assistance loan worth €1.2 billion disbursed in the first half of the year. Together, the two strands of the program will bring the total macro-financial aid to Ukraine since the start of the war to €2.2 billion, a figure that could reach €10 billion once the full aid package comes into operation. exceptional macro-financial assistance to that country, according to the European Commission.

According to the proposal, macro-financial assistance funds will be provided to Ukraine in the form of long-term loans on favorable terms. The aid will support Ukraine’s macroeconomic stability and resilience in the context of Russia’s military invasion and ensuing economic difficulties.

Since 2014, the EU has provided more than €5 billion to Ukraine under five macro-financial assistance programs to support the implementation of reforms in areas such as the fight against corruption, an independent judiciary, the rule of law and the improvement of the business climate.

In addition, earlier this year, the Commission granted an emergency macro-financial assistance loan worth €1.2 billion, for which the Commission raised funds in two private placements in the first half of 2022. The Commission presented on 18 Union immediate response plans to address Ukraine’s funding gap and a long-term reconstruction framework.

To finance macro-financial assistance, the Commission borrows on the capital markets on behalf of the EU, in parallel with its other programmes, notably NextGenerationEU and SURE. The possible loan for Ukraine is foreseen in the Commission’s financing plan for the second half of 2022.