The EU is ready to provide long-term security commitments to Ukraine, and the European Commission has already presented a draft decision to the EU member states, according to media.
Citing its sources, Bloomberg reported that EU ambassadors will discuss the draft framework on providing guarantees to Ukraine this week, and the leaders of the member states will discuss it at the summit next month.
According to Bloomberg, it will also form the basis for consultations between Kyiv and the G7 countries.
EU’s long-term security commitments to Ukraine
The EU framework document aims to build on these bilateral agreements and includes the following proposals:
- A predictable, efficient, sustainable and long-term mechanism for providing military equipment to Ukraine that mobilizes the European defense industry;
- Providing training for the Ukrainian armed forces;
- Deepening cooperation with the Ukrainian defense industry to build capacity and harmonize standards;
- Strengthening Ukraine’s ability to counter cyber and hybrid threats and disinformation;
- Supporting Ukraine’s demining efforts and addressing contamination caused by explosive remnants;
- Assisting Ukraine in implementing its reform program related to the EU accession process, as well as strengthening its ability to control stockpiles of firearms, small arms and ammunition and counter any illicit trafficking;
- Supporting the country’s energy transition and nuclear security efforts;
- Exchange of intelligence and satellite imagery.
- The document states that support for the supply of weapons will continue to be provided through the so-called European Peace Fund, a mechanism that reimburses EU member states for the weapons they supply to Ukraine.
EU’s plan to provide €20 billion military aid to Ukraine at risk
However, the EU’s initial plan to provide €20 billion military aid to Ukraine over four years to pay for weapons and ammunition is at risk of falling through as some member states, including Germany, have been unable to agree on the terms, according to an EU diplomat, quoted by the media.
Instead, the EU member states hope to at least agree on €5 billion for next year, with commitments for further support after that, said the diplomat, who spoke anonymously.
Read more in our article: Will EU states approve €20 military aid plan for Ukraine?
It is worth noting that Hungary regularly blocks the disbursement of funds from the European Peace Fund.
Read more on this topic in our article: Reasons behind Orban’s pro-Russian and anti-Ukrainian stance.
These discussions come as the EU fails to fulfil its promise to provide Ukraine with one million pieces of artillery ammunition by March 2024. European Commissioner for the Internal Market Thierry Breton stated that by the spring of 2024, the production capacity of the EU defense companies in the EU will reach one million artillery shells annually.
But 40 per cent of the production is exported outside Europe. Still, the transfer of ammunition to Ukraine requires political will. “Ukraine should be a priority,” Thierry Breton emphasized.
To ensure the supply of ammunition to the Ukrainian Armed Forces, the European Union has invested 2 billion euros from the European Peace Fund. Ukraine has already received at least 300,000 units of ammunition from the EU’s stockpiles.
Earlier, the G7 members agreed at the NATO summit in Vilnius to hold talks with Ukraine on bilateral security commitments aimed at deterring future Russian aggression.
For its part, Ukraine committed to continuing several reforms, including in law enforcement, judicial, security, and defense. Some of Kyiv’s key allies seek to conclude bilateral agreements this year.