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€5 billion aid is for Ukraine, not for development of EU defence industry – EU chief diplomat

Tuesday, 19 March 2024, 00:32
€5 billion aid is for Ukraine, not for development of EU defence industry – EU chief diplomat
Josep Borrell. Photo: Getty Images

The €5 billion European Peace Facility was developed to support Ukraine militarily, so EU countries can use it both to order ammunition and to compensate for purchases outside the EU.

Source: EU chief diplomat Josep Borrell at a press conference in Brussels following the EU Foreign Affairs Council, quoted by Ukrinform

Quote: "The Ukrainian Assistance Fund is to assist Ukraine, and it’s not to develop the European defence industry, it is to support Ukraine. 


And I put it clearly today that any member state who wants to buy ammunition outside the European Union, because they have an offer, or they know where to buy it, they can do it, and this is eligible to be refunded from the European Peace Facility."

Details: Borrell noted that member states wishing to supply weapons and ammunition to Ukraine could get them from anywhere – from their own stockpiles, from the European defence industry companies or from any supplier in the world.

For instance, Czechia's initiative to supply 800,000 artillery shells to Ukraine is perfectly eligible to use the Ukrainian Assistance Fund to partially offset the costs of the member states involved in this initiative.

Quote: "If member states agree on seizing the revenues from frozen Russian assets, these resources could partially be allocated to the European Peace Facility, to increase our military support to Ukraine.

This is nothing new - we have been discussing that for months. And also to increase the defence capacity of the industrial sector in Ukraine.

Both things are needed. We have to push for the industrial capacity of the Ukrainian defence sector at home, and we can in the meantime provide… supply arms to Ukraine. And for that, we have an instrument, which is the European Peace Facility."

Details: He reiterated that such an extra-budgetary instrument as the European Peace Facility was created for a very simple reason. Under EU law, the EU budget cannot be used to purchase weapons. At the same time, an intergovernmental extra-budgetary fund is free from such legal restrictions.

"But the Ukrainian Assistance Fund is to support Ukraine, and has only this purpose," Borrell added.

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