MOSCOW (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 24th November, 2022) The European Parliament approved on Thursday an 18 billion euro ($18.7 billion) conditional loan for Ukraine to cover essential public services and rehabilitation of infrastructure throughout next year.
"The 18 billion Euros will cover roughly half of the estimated 3-4 billion euros monthly funding Ukraine needs in 2023. The money will go to supporting essential public services - such as running hospitals, schools, and providing housing for relocated people -, macroeconomic stability and the restoration of critical infrastructure destroyed by Russia, according to the Commission's proposal," the EU legislature said in a statement.
The loan was approved by 507 votes in favor, 38 against and 26 abstentions.
"It requires reforms to strengthen the country's institutions and prepare it both for reconstruction and its path towards EU membership," the statement read.
Before disbursing each monthly installment, the European Commission will review the progress made by Ukraine in reforms to fight against corruption, the rule of law, good governance and the modernization of institutions.
The 2023 loan for Ukraine was proposed by the European Commission on November 9. The package, averaging 1.5 billion euros per month, is expected to help Ukraine cover a significant part of its funding needs in 2023, which the Ukrainian authorities and the International Monetary Fund estimate at 3 to 4 billion euros per month.
Since Russia launched a military operation in Ukraine on February 24, Western countries have been providing Kiev with humanitarian, military and financial aid. Most recently, the European Union allocated 1 billion euros to Ukraine on October 25 and an additional 2.5 billion euros this past Tuesday for reconstruction needs.