Ukraine has not received “a single cent” for its $17 billion recovery fund, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on Tuesday.
Addressing a conference on Ukraine’s reconstruction via video link, Zelenskyy said Russian missiles and Iranian drones have destroyed “more than a third” of his country’s energy sector.
He said Ukraine’s recovery plan is aimed at “critical immediate reconstruction.”
“These are hospitals, schools, vital transport and energy infrastructure,” he told the conference, which was co-hosted by Germany and the EU in Berlin.
He said Russian tanks and artillery have “methodically destroyed cities,” making it imperative “to give people a new foundation for life.”
“Missiles and Iranian combat drones have destroyed more than a third of the energy industry alone ... and this is before winter,” he added.
“Russia destroys all of this … to make it harder for us to endure this winter. So that Ukrainians could not recover from this war for as long as possible.”
There is “a huge need for housing reconstruction” in Ukraine, Zelenskyy emphasized.
“As of now we haven’t received a single cent for the implementation of Fast Recovery Plan. So, I’m asking you to make the necessary decision today,” he asserted.
By helping Ukraine, the EU is also securing its own future, he added.
“When we free our entire territory from Russian invaders, the EU will be able to replace dirty Russian energy resources with our help. And our export of electricity – potentially tens of gigawatts – will be one of the fundamental pillars of European climate policy,” he said.
Zelenskyy called on the international community to cover Ukraine’s budget deficit of $38 billion for next year, terming it an “unsustainable amount.”