European Parliament approves 18B euro loan for Ukraine for 2023

Members of the European Parliament approved on November 24 an 18 billion euro loan to support Ukraine during Russia’s war against the country.

The 18 billion euro will cover roughly half of the estimated three to four billion euro monthly funding Ukraine needs in 2023.

The money will go to supporting essential public services – such as running hospitals, schools, and providing housing for relocated people -, macroeconomic stability and the restoration of critical infrastructure destroyed by Russia, according to the European Commission’s proposal.

Sourced by the EU from financial markets, the loan will be paid out in quarterly instalments, with a continuity and predictability that is essential to keep Ukraine afloat amid the war.

The loan is conditional for Ukraine. It requires reforms to strengthen the country’s institutions and prepare it both for reconstruction and its path towards EU membership.

To be reviewed by the European Commission before each instalment, the conditions include measures for anti-corruption, judicial reform, respect of the rule of law, good governance, and modernisation institutions.

The regulation was adopted with 507 votes to 38 and 26 abstentions.

The loan now has to be approved by unanimity the Council of the EU on December 6 before the Commission can tap the markets and disburse the support in early 2023.

Since the start of the war, the EU and its member states have provided 19.7 billion euro to support Ukraine, a large part of which has come in the form of macro-financial assistance approved by the European Parliament in September and July.

In a separate vote on November 24, the European Parliament endorsed a decision not to accept passports and other travel documents issued by Russia in illegally-occupied regions of Ukraine and Georgia.

The European Parliament approved the agreement with the Council of the EU on the non-acceptance of travel documents issued by Russia in occupied Ukrainian regions and so-called breakaway territories of Georgia, for the purposes of issuing visas or crossing the EU’s external borders, with 531 votes in favour, seven against and 34 abstentions.

According to the proposal, the Commission should consult EU member states and draw up a list of Russian travel documents, notably passports, which should not be accepted.

However, those fleeing the conflict in Ukraine will still be able to enter the EU on humanitarian grounds.

(Photo: EC Audiovisual Service)

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