EU transfers Russia’s frozen asset profits to Ukraine

EU transfers Russia's frozen asset profits to Ukraine 0

(Dan Tri) – The EU reached an agreement on a plan to use billions of euros in profits from frozen assets of the Russian central bank to support Ukraine.

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky and President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen (Photo: AFP).

On May 8, Belgium announced that European Union (EU) ambassadors had `agreed in principle on measures related to extraordinary revenue derived from Russian fixed assets`.

The announcement said the money will be used `to support Ukraine’s military resilience and defense in the context of Russia’s military campaign`.

`There can be no stronger symbol and no greater use for that money than to make Ukraine and all of Europe a safer place to live,` the head of the European Commission said.

In March, leaders of the 27-member bloc agreed to move forward with the plan, which is expected to disburse about 3 billion euros ($3.3 billion) a year, to Ukraine.

The EU has frozen about 200 billion euros in Russian central bank assets as part of sanctions imposed on Moscow over its military campaign in Ukraine.

The option of confiscating the money and transferring it to Ukraine has so far been ruled out because of concerns that it could shake international markets and weaken the euro.

Instead, EU leaders decided to target profits arising from frozen assets, despite Kremlin warnings of `serious consequences`.

According to the agreement, presented to EU ministers for formal approval, 90% of profits will go to the European Peace Facility fund, which is used to pay for weapons for Ukraine, while 10% will go to

About 90% of Russia’s frozen assets in the EU are held by international depository institution Euroclear, headquartered in Belgium.

As part of the deal, diplomats said Belgium had agreed to send Ukraine all proceeds from taxes imposed on assets frozen since the start of the conflict.

While Russia is putting its economy in a wartime state, the EU has failed to fulfill a commitment made last year to supply Ukraine with one million artillery shells this month.

Estonia’s foreign minister, which is leading the effort to increase support for Ukraine, said the new EU deal should be seen as a `first step` towards using all of Russia’s frozen assets to support Russia.

`3 billion per year for Ukraine is nothing compared to 200 billion to help Ukraine win,` Estonian Foreign Minister commented.

An estimated $397 billion in Russian assets have been frozen by the West, of which three-quarters are central bank assets, in addition to yachts, real estate and other assets of financiers.

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