Ukraine receives first portion of new 50 billion euro EU aid package

Ukraine received a new $1.6 billion tranche of financial support from the EU on Wednesday and hopes to get another 10 billion euros later this year, officials said. Finance Minister Serhiy Marchenko said the EU, which has provided Ukraine with 31 billion euros, had become the biggest donor of budget financing to Ukraine since the start of Russia’s invasion in February 2022. The United States, which has approved billions of dollars to Ukraine, is also an important donor. “International support is a key to ensure macroeconomic stability and build a foundation for economic growth,” Marchenko said. Ukraine faces a $37 billion budget deficit this year and relies heavily on financial aid from its Western partners to be able to finance its social and humanitarian spending. Kyiv uses most of its state revenues to fund defense efforts as its troops fight a larger and better equipped Russian army. First Deputy Prime Minister Yulia Svyrydenko said the government looked forward to final approval of the EU’s Ukraine Facility lending program worth 50 billion euros and hoped to receive three more tranches this year. “In fact, we are one step away from the launch of the program and full regular funding under the program,” said Svyrydenko. She said that following the final approval, Kyiv would be able to receive 1.89 billion euros in June and two more tranches worth about 4 billion euros in September and November. implement a number of reforms and meet other program indicators to be able to unlock the tranches. The steps include measures to improve transparency, fight corruption, improve business environment, and bring the country’s legislation closer to the EU.