Written by Tim Peters.
Ukraine’s recovery and EU accession will be a defining project of the European Union in the 2020s. The costs will be massive. A regularly quoted number for the cost of recovery is €383 billion, based on a damage assessment carried out by the World Bank. However, until Ukraine has liberated all territories temporarily occupied by Russia, that number will rise further.
The EU and its Member States, together as ‘Team Europe’, have committed approximately €72 billion in financial, military and humanitarian support for Ukraine and its people, including for Ukrainian refugees in the EU, as of June 2023. On top of that comes an additional €50 billion for the EU’s Ukraine Facility proposed by the European Commission on 20 June 2023 ahead of the Ukraine Recovery Conference in London the following day. Considering the large amounts of EU money involved, full democratic scrutiny of the spending by the European Parliament and effective budgetary control measures are crucial.
Not all of the recovery can and will be financed by the public sector. Ukraine – with the help of the EU and other partners – has to create the right environment for private investment as fast as possible. An overall security guarantee for Ukraine and financial guarantees for early private investments are as essential as strengthening of the rule of law through more transparency, judicial reform and anti-corruption measures.
A democratic Ukraine based on the rule of law and with a vibrant market economy would serve as a beacon of freedom and prosperity, and could thus act as a successful catalyst for democratic change in the whole region.
Read the complete in-depth analysis on ‘Financing Ukraine’s recovery: Consequences for the EU budget and budgetary control, and principles for success‘ in the Think Tank pages of the European Parliament.