Putin’s war is undoing many of Ukraine’s achievements. We stand firmly with the people of Ukraine and call for an immediate cessation of hostilities. We express our solidarity with the people, who are currently having to endure unspeakable suffering.
Svenja Schulze on 25 February 2022Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development
Germany has been supporting Ukraine through development cooperation for many years in a range of different areas. They include strengthening civil protection, energy supply and providing accommodation for people who had already been displaced from their home region in 2014. With the start of the war it was clear that these programmes would not be able to continue as planned.
Therefore, over the last few weeks, the BMZ has been making huge efforts to provide the people in Ukraine with quick and flexible assistance. In accordance with the wishes of our Ukrainian partners in the government, municipalities and civil society, we have adapted our ongoing cooperation activities. At the forefront of these activities now is meeting the acute needs of the people in Ukraine.
Our current development policy emergency programme has a total volume of 185 million euros (as at 8 May 2022). Further measures will follow. The emergency programme is being implemented by GIZ and KfW Entwicklungsbank via partners on the ground. These partners include the Ukrainian civil protection services, partner municipalities, and organisations like the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).
This support is now to be expanded with funds of 406 million euros announced at the reconstruction conference in Lugano in July 2022. Exactly how the funds will be used has yet to be agreed with the Bundestag's budget committee. The focus is to be on supporting families who have fled within the country.
German activitiesWhat are we doing?
We are providing the Ukrainian civil protection services with equipment that is helping to save lives. The first deliveries of protective clothing, respiratory protective devices and fire extinguishers were already handed over to our Ukrainian partners in Kyiv and in western Ukraine on the eighth day of the war.
We are helping to strengthen Ukraine's infrastructure. We are assisting with the repair of the electricity grid and water supply infrastructure in order to help ensure that the people of Ukraine have access to power and water. We are also supporting local communities in their efforts to provide social services.
We are supporting the acute crisis management activities of partner municipalities. Ukrainian municipalities that we have so far been advising on implementing administrative reforms are now receiving support from us in connection with procuring relief supplies from both Germany and the EU. The municipalities are also receiving advisory support from us in connection with coordinating disaster relief efforts.
We are helping to provide shelter for displaced persons. Our efforts to help displaced people were initially concentrated on eastern Ukraine. We were engaged there in supporting the construction of housing for people who had been displaced in 2014. Now we have expanded our support to erecting shelters or equipping buildings to house the many more Ukrainians who have currently been forced to flee their homes because of the war. Residential buildings, schools and kindergartens are being rehabilitated and equipped to provide shelter for internally displaced persons.
We are providing support for small and medium-sized businesses.A project that was aimed at strengthening the economic situation of people already displaced in 2014 is now providing support to people who ran small and medium-sized businesses but were displaced by the war, so that they can now resume operating small and medium-sized businesses. In addition, the BMZ is providing transitional development assistance in the shape of financial support for small and medium-sized businesses in Ukraine.
Together with UNICEF we are scaling up our psychosocial counselling programmes for people who have been displaced. Our ongoing cooperation to help provide psychosocial counselling for displaced persons, in particular women, children and young people, is now being aimed at regions in Ukraine that are currently hosting especially large numbers of displaced people.
We are helping to secure the provision of health services. We are supplying medical goods nationwide through the Ukrainian Social Investment Fund. Through hospital partnerships, medicinal equipment and materials are being delivered to clinics in Kyiv and L'viv for treating the injured, especially children.
We are helping to create access to education. We are supporting existing educational structures but are also providing additional educational offerings for displaced children and young people, as well as online courses and vocational education and training for internally displaced persons.
We are assisting our partner countries Moldova and Georgia in their efforts to deal with the refugee crisis and the economic impacts of the war. The Emergency Support Programme for Moldova has been scaled up to a total volume of 90 million euros (as at 8 May 2022). The programme is helping the Republic of Moldova with, for example, the management of the national crisis centre, finding jobs for refugees, and hosting and integrating them into local communities.
At the same time the BMZ will be supporting Moldova in reducing its energy dependence on Russia – including by making more use of renewable energy and by improving energy efficiency.
Other countries that neighbour the EU to the East are also plainly feeling the economic impacts of the war. Revenues from exports to Russia have been lost, while food prices are rising. That is why 27 million euros in additional support was committed for Georgia (as at 8 May 2022), in order to help mitigate the social and economic consequences of the war.
The global impacts of the war
Russia and Ukraine are major producers of grain. In countries that depend on wheat imports from Ukraine and Russia, there is a threat of hunger. What is more, as a result of the war, food prices – which were already very high – have risen further. Our programmes in the fields of food security, agriculture and rural development are aimed at transforming global agricultural and food systems. This includes strengthening local cultivation and local/regional trade. That makes agricultural and food systems more resilient and reduces dependence on imports. Our goal is economically, ecologically and socially sustainable agricultural and food systems.
The severity of the crisis caused by the war is also due in part to chronic problems with agricultural and food systems. These problems include vulnerable supply chains and depending on too few suppliers and too few different crops. The BMZ is one of the driving forces behind efforts to transform agricultural and food systems to make them more sustainable. They need to become more sustainable and as a result more resilient – that is active crisis prevention.
Affordable energy supplies
The increased energy prices as a result of the war are hitting developing countries very hard. Their extensive dependence on imported fossil fuels means that many of these countries are vulnerable.
The BMZ is already assisting many partner countries in expanding the use of renewable energies. Initially this is about ensuring that these countries are able to cover their own energy consumption. Being able to produce energy from renewable sources locally is a huge opportunity for poorer countries in particular: renewable energies are a boon to development, enabling countries to have a secure, affordable, eco-friendly and independent energy supply, and creating new jobs.
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