European Commission to provide Ukraine, Moldova with EUR 135 million intended for projects with Russia, Belarus
The European Commission will allocate EUR 135 million to Ukraine and Moldova for programs to strengthen international cooperation, which were originally intended for Russia and Belarus
This is stated on the website of the European Commission.
It is noted that for 2021-2027, Russia and Belarus were planned to receive funds under the Neighborhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument under the Interreg NEXT program. Now these funds will be used to implement similar projects in Ukraine and Moldova.
After the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine and EU sanctions, Russia and Belarus were excluded from the program and their cooperation was suspended. This led to the reallocation of EUR 26 million to support cooperation programs with Ukraine and Moldova. This decision similarly reallocates the remaining funding for the period 2021-2027.
“The decision to cancel the originally envisaged cooperation with Russia and Belarus through our Interreg programmes is the result of the brutal war of Russia against Ukraine. I am glad that the funds we had initially planned for this cooperation will now benefit the EU's programmes with Ukraine and Moldova. This will help strengthen collaboration between EU regions and local stakeholders with Ukrainian and Moldovan partners," said Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms Elisa Ferreira.
Thus, the funds will be used to support the Solidarity Lanes program and the development of cross-border transport links, health care services, educational and research projects, social integration schemes, and strengthening the institutional capacity of public authorities.
The European Commission emphasizes that participation in Interreg programs also brings administrative capacity and experience benefits to both countries in the management and implementation of EU funds.
In addition, the Commission has decided that the regions of Finland, Estonia, Latvia and Poland, which were supposed to participate in cooperation programs with Russia and Belarus, can participate in other existing Interreg programs.
EU assistance to Ukraine
Every month since the beginning of the full-scale invasion, the European Union has been providing macro-financial assistance to Ukraine.
Also, on May 5, the EU Council decided to allocate EUR 1 billion for the purchase of ammunition for Ukraine under the European Peace Facility (EPF).
On May 23, the European Commission disbursed a new EUR 1.5 billion tranche of macro-financial assistance to Ukraine. The funds were used to pay salaries, pensions and repair critical infrastructure.
The aid also included a package of sanctions against Russia, which provides for the elimination of loopholes that help it circumvent previously imposed restrictions. It was agreed by EU ambassadors on June 21.
Subsequently, the EU provided another EUR 1.5 billion in macro-financial assistance to Ukraine to support public services and infrastructure.
On July 3, Ukraine's fund received the second tranche of the International Monetary Fund, amounting to USD 890 million.
Also on Tuesday, July 25, the EU allocated a new tranche of macro-financial assistance to Ukraine in the amount of EUR 1.5 billion.