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Aid to Ukraine: the European Union’s path to finding at least 50 billion euros

Slovakia's Prime Minister Robert Fico, right, talks to Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban during a round table meeting at an EU summit in Brussels, Thursday, Feb. 1, 2024. European Union leaders meet in Brussels for a one day summit to discuss the revision of the Multiannual Financial Framework 2021-2027, including support for Ukraine. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Europe wishes to continue to mobilize so that Ukraine can emerge from the war on top. This Thursday and Friday, the 27 EU members are meeting in Brussels to discuss new aid of at least 50 billion euros to Ukraine. Several avenues are being advanced.
How to finance aid to Ukraine and strengthening the defense of the European continent? The question torments the 27 European heads of state and government who are meeting this Thursday and Friday in Brussels. We must find at least 50 billion euros, in addition to the 96 billion already paid to Ukraine since the start of the war. A real headache.

To resolve it, one of the avenues proposed by Josep Borrell, the head of European diplomacy, consists of using the interest generated by Russian assets frozen in Europe, or around 3 billion euros each year out of the 200 billion confiscated by Brussels. These are investments in European Treasury bills and bonds held by the Russian Central Bank in Europe.

Most of these funds are blocked in Belgium, where they have been deposited with Euroclear, an international fund deposit organization. But Russia has threatened Europe with legal action if its assets or the interest generated by its investments are used, as envisaged by the European Commission.

Call on the European investment bank?


Other avenues are also advanced. Call on the European investment bank which for the moment is only financing aid to Ukraine to the tune of 100 million euros out of the 75 billion lent by the bank last year. Or, as France and Estonia wish, organize a large community loan of 100 billion euros which will be used to finance European defense and aid to Ukraine.

This article is originally published on europe1.fr

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