EU to use interest from frozen Russian assets for Ukraine

EU to use interest from frozen Russian assets for Ukraine

The European Union is to use interest accrued from frozen Russian assets worth around €210 billion to support Ukraine.

The decision by the EU’s General Affairs Council will benefit Ukraine to the tune of between €2.5 billion and €3 billion per year.

The Ukrainian government and some European politicians have called for the EU institutions to go further and seize the Russian assets — which are currently “immobilised” — in their entirety, but there are concerns this would be incompatible with international law.

The EU says the revenues generated from interest on the immobilised assets, however, is not the property of Russia and only accrue because of the decision to immobilise the assets, meaning their use is legally sound.

Valdis Dombrovskis, the European Commission’s executive vice-president for an Economy that Works for People, said: “I welcome the formal decision taken today in the Council which will allow the extraordinary revenues from assets of the Russian Central Bank immobilised under sanctions following Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine, to be used to the benefit of Ukraine.

“The EU has chosen a way forward that is legally sound, and flexible so that support can adjust to Ukraine’s most pressing needs. Speed remains of the essence and the Commission will continue making all efforts to allow the first payment to be made already in July.”

VÄ›ra Jourová, vice-president for Values and Transparency, said: “Today’s decision marks a significant step forward in our unwavering support for Ukraine. This initiative not only aids Ukraine in its recovery but also underscores our commitment to upholding international law and justice.

“In 2024 the proceeds from the immobilised assets will primarily support Ukraine’s military activities to defend itself and to boost its military capabilities, to meet the country’s most immediate needs.”

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