Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, speaks during a press conference. Photo: Jonas Ekstromer/TT News Agency/AP/dpa
This was announced by EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on Friday during a visit to the northern Swedish city of Kiruna. Von der Leyen said that support for Ukraine would continue undeterred. The new emergency aid package is the largest that the EU has ever set up for a partner country.
According to von der Leyens, the planned international donor platform should also be ready for use this month. She will help coordinate the diverse support to Ukraine and also ensure that reforms are linked to the reconstruction. “Because this paves the way to the European Union,” added von der Leyen.
With the new financial aid, the EU wants to enable the Ukrainian state to continue paying wages and pensions. In addition, the operation of hospitals, schools and emergency shelters for resettled people should be guaranteed. In addition, the money should also be used to restore infrastructure destroyed by the Russian war of aggression. These include, for example, power lines, water systems, roads and bridges. According to a Commission spokesman, the first payment from the new loan program will amount to 1.5 billion euros.
The country has up to 35 years to repay the loans, which are scheduled to start in 2033. The interest costs are borne by the member states of the EU. The reason for the visit of the EU Commission President to Sweden was the start of the country’s six-month EU Council Presidency on January 1st.