Belgium, (Brussels Morning Newspaper) The European Commission has proposed the first macro-financial assistance (MFA) payment to Ukraine of 1 billion euro.
The payment is part of the MFA package worth 9 billion euro announced in May and approved by the EU Council in June, the Commission pointed out in a statement.
The body noted that the proposal is part of international efforts to help Ukraine cover its financial needs in the wake of Russian aggression.
It added that the proposal complements the support that the bloc already provided to Ukraine, including the emergency MFA loan of 1.2 billion euro paid earlier this year.
“Under the proposal, MFA funds will be made available to Ukraine in the form of long-term loans on favourable terms,” the EC pointed out and stressed “the assistance will support Ukraine’s macroeconomic stability and overall resilience in the context of Russia’s military aggression and the ensuing economic challenges.”
The EU will cover the interest costs, with the EC noting that it borrow money on the international market and provide the funds to Ukraine.
The Commission added that it will make the money available as soon as EU Council and Parliament approve the proposal and sign relevant documents with Ukrainian authorities.
EU’s unwavering support
EC President Ursula von der Leyen stressed that the EU stands by Ukraine and “will keep on providing relief to Ukraine and in the longer-term support its reconstruction as a democratic and prosperous country.”
Valdis Dombrovskis, European Commissioner for Trade, stressed that the move “demonstrates the EU’s firm commitment to support Ukraine and its people in the face of Russia’s continued illegal aggression.”
“These loans will allow Ukraine to meet more of its immediate massive financing needs, with the EU showing further solidarity by covering the interest costs,” he concluded.
Josep Borrell, High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, stressed that Russian aggression is “putting massive economic pressure on the Ukrainian people.”
He added that the EC’s move shows the EU “continues to stand with Ukraine and its people.”
Johannes Hahn, European Commissioner for Budget and Administration, noted that Ukraine is in a difficult position and concluded that the EC expects the EU Parliament and Council to reach agreement on the proposal quickly.