The UK has released the first tranche of a £10 million commitment to help rebuild Ukraine’s energy infrastructure damaged as a result of Russian attacks.
Foreign Secretary James Cleverly said an initial £5 million has been released to the Ukraine Energy Support Fund following the government’s pledge earlier this year.
The support provided by the UK – the biggest donor so far – will help with essential repairs to critical energy infrastructure and reconnect households and key facilities to power supply.
It follows Russia’s widespread missile and drone strikes, which have particularly targeted Ukraine’s electricity supply, since October 2022.
More than 40% of Ukraine’s energy infrastructure, including transmission lines, power stations and pipelines, is said to have been damaged or destroyed by Russian attacks, leaving millions of Ukrainians without power or with rolling blackouts.
Mr Cleverly said: “Russia’s attacks on vital infrastructure show that Putin is resorting to desperate measures. But even in the face of missile attacks and blackouts, the resolve of the Ukrainian people remains unbroken.
“The Government of Ukraine said it needed specialised energy equipment to repair critical national infrastructure, and the UK is delivering on their request.
“The UK has made the largest donation to date to this Fund. We need all partners to step up their support and show Putin that his attempts to destroy Ukraine will be met with fierce resistance.”
The UK has also provided £7 million for more than 850 generators so vital facilities, such as hospitals, have power and a further £5 million for safety and security equipment for the civil nuclear industry.
In addition, it has put up a $50 million (£42m) guarantee for financing for Ukraine’s state-owned energy provider Ukrenergo through the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.
UK Business and Energy Secretary Grant Shapps, who met Vadym Prystaiko, Ambassador of Ukraine to the UK, to discuss the latest funding, has issued a call to action to UK industry to consider supplying emergency energy equipment such as power generators, transformers and connectors.
The UK stands together with Ukraine in the face of Russian brutality 🇺🇦 🇬🇧 and I commend their bravery in rebuilding their nation.
A pleasure to meet @VPrystaiko yesterday to discuss the funding to help get power back to Ukrainian people after Putin’s weaponisation of energy. pic.twitter.com/qJnrtPB8Eq
— Rt Hon Grant Shapps MP (@grantshapps) November 15, 2022
He added: “We cannot stand by and watch millions of innocent Ukrainian citizens continue to suffer due to barbaric Russian air strikes. Today’s intervention from the UK Government will be critical in helping to get Ukraine’s power back up and running.
“But this alone simply won’t suffice. In Ukraine’s hour of need, I call on the generosity of the UK industry to join the government in donating emergency energy equipment and resources through the Energy Support Fund. This will help rebuild what has been damaged by Putin’s illegal invasion as we continue to stand with the people of Ukraine.”
The Department for International Trade is also working with relevant UK trade associations and Ukrainian energy companies to identify areas where UK expertise and equipment can be provided.