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Euractiv: EU budget discussions delay release of $21 billion Ukraine war fund

by Olena Goncharova October 17, 2023 3:40 AM 2 min read
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Talks to enhance the European Peace Facility (EPF), the EU’s funding mechanism for sustaining European military supplies to Ukraine, are unlikely to conclude before EU leaders convene in December to evaluate the bloc's entire budget.

"We do not anticipate any response to this matter prior to the European Council meeting in December, where leaders will discuss all budget-related issues to make a decision. "Budgetary issues are a matter for leaders to address," one EU diplomat told Euractiv.  "This also applies to the increase in the European Peace Facility because this time we're discussing a substantial sum of money."

During their regular December summit, leaders of the EU27 countries are expected to discuss the future finances of the bloc, based on the European Commission's proposed review of the EU budget, a new fund for strategic technologies (STEP), and an increase in the European Peace Facility.

The fund has been deemed vital by EU member states for contributing their defense equipment to Ukraine, as it would provide reimbursement for these deliveries. The expansion of the fund, alongside other forms of support, has been presented as a "security arrangement" for Ukraine, aimed at sustaining long-term assistance.

"EU leaders will discuss the entire package of Ukraine support," a EU official informed Euractiv. "The package encompasses the mid-term review of the EU budget, €50 billion ($51 billion) in macro-financial assistance to Ukraine, a €20 ($21 billion) billion Peace Facility top-up, and the new Strategic Technology European Platform," the official added.

The amounts requested by the EU Commission have been approached with caution by member states, as budgets are under pressure across Europe.

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