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State energy operator receives loans of 400 million euros to repair grid after Russian attacks

by The Kyiv Independent news desk December 11, 2022 1:15 PM 2 min read
A photo shared by Ukrenergo shows an unidentified energy facility damaged by a Russian missile attack.
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Ukraine’s state grid operator said on Dec. 10 that it would receive over 400 million euros worth of loans from European institutions to purchase some critically needed equipment to restore the energy infrastructure damaged by Russian missile attacks.

Ukrenergo said that the government had provided state guarantees for it to receive a 300 million euro loan from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

In addition to the EBRD loan, half of which would be guaranteed by the U.S., Ukrenergo will receive 72 million euro as a grant from the Dutch government “to make swift emergency repairs of damages caused by heavy bombings of civilian power infrastructure.”

Ukraine's government is also providing a state guarantee for Ukrenergo to receive a 32.5 million euro loan from the German state bank KfW to repair eight damaged substations “in a southwestern region,” according to the state energy grid operator.

Ukrenergo added that the repair process would kick off as soon as the loan and guarantee agreement with KfW were signed.

“Today, it is a key task for us to be able to provide Ukrainians with electricity during this difficult winter for all of us,” Ukrenergo said.

Ukrenergo’s statement comes as Russia ramps up its months-long campaign to destroy energy infrastructure across Ukraine amid battlefield setbacks. Head of Ukrenergo Volodymyr Kudrytskyi recently said that Russia had fired more than 1,000 missiles and drones at energy sites since the campaign began on Oct. 10.

Ukraine is racing to restore its energy infrastructure as it faces a “significant” energy deficit, according to Ukrenergo, but that process remains difficult amid limited resources and Russia’s continued bombardment of energy sites nationwide.

Scheduled and emergency blackouts continue. Late on Dec. 10, President Volodymyr Zelensky said that over 1.5 million people in the southern city of Odesa, as well as in the region, were left without electricity due to an overnight Russian drone strike on several energy facilities in the area. Repair is underway but energy workers are facing an immense challenge to turn the lights back on.

Separately, on Dec. 9, the Norwegian government said that it had signed an agreement with the World Bank’s Eastern Europe regional office to allocate about $90 million to restore Ukraine’s energy systems.

“There is an urgent need to repair the electricity supply system and other infrastructure in Ukraine following Russia’s bombing campaign against civilian targets,” Norwegian Foreign Minister Anniken Huitfeldt said in a statement.

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