Zelensky: “Monthly deficit of 5 billion dollars because of the war”

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As a result of the war against Russia, Ukraine’s budget deficit amounted to $5 billion a month, or about €4.7 billion. To be able to bear this burden, financial assistance from abroad is necessary. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said so in his daily video message on Thursday evening.

Zelensky thanked the United States and the European Union for their support for Ukraine. The United States is providing additional military aid, and the US Senate on Thursday approved a $40 billion aid package. The EU has already pledged 9 billion euros to Ukraine on Wednesday.

Zelensky stressed that foreign money should not be seen as a gift, but as a “contribution to one’s own security”. “Because defending Ukraine is also defending against new wars and crises that Russia could provoke.”

EU examines whether money can be used for reconstruction by oligarchs

Since the start of the war, the United States and Europe have seized some $30 billion in Russian assets. Besides bank accounts, this also applies to yachts, real estate and art. The European Commission is studying whether the frozen assets of Russian oligarchs can be used for the reconstruction of Ukraine.

Commission President Ursula von der Leyen told the German broadcaster on Thursday evening ZDF that she thinks that “Russia should make a contribution” and that lawyers are therefore studying the possibilities of using these resources for Ukraine.

The chairman of the committee also wants reconstruction aid to be linked to the reforms necessary for Ukraine’s eventual accession to the European Union. “We have to co-finance the reconstruction of Ukraine,” von der Leyen said. “It makes sense to tackle reforms at the same time, for example against corruption or to build the rule of law.”

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