With the war damage of the ongoing Russian aggression against Ukraine increasing daily, the toll on infrastructure, natural resources and energy supply showcases the urgent need for structural renewal of Ukraine. How can European countries further support rebuilding Ukraine's vital infrastructures and improving its resilience and sustainability?
Committee on Foreign Affairs III
Chaired by Luke Bishop (IE). Covered by Eclair Eclairush (BY)
Please be aware this Topic Overview was published in the end of January, 2023. Some information might be outdated.
On the 24th of February 2022, Russia launched an invasion of Ukraine in the biggest escalation since the start of the Russo-Ukrainian War in 2014. This invasion has caused an estimated 200,000 deaths2, with over 8 million Ukrainians being displaced so far.3 The European Union took a rapid approach to the ongoing invasion, imposing several rounds of punitive sanctions against the Russian government, in order to financially cripple Russia’s ability to engage in the invasion. In recent months, we have seen Ukraine taking back control of areas of Ukraine previously occupied by Russia, including parts of the southern region of Kherson. This resistance can be seen in areas such as the battle of Mariupol, fought for three months between the initial invasion and May 2022. The 1,700 Ukrainian forces in the area held back an army 10 times their size4, until formally declaring an end to their combat mission on the 20th of May 2022. While the war is still ongoing in the south-eastern and eastern regions of Ukraine5, Ukraine has focused on rebuilding the areas affected, such as Odesa, and Kyiv. This rebuilding will focus on infrastructure, energy supply, agriculture, and governance. Since the start of the invasion, the European Union has mobilised €9.5 Billion6 in macro financial assistance, budget support, emergency assistance, crisis response and humanitarian aid.
Executive summary
What areas of Ukrainian infrastructure should this be allocated to?
Other than monetary funding, what other ways can the European Union support and assist in the rebuilding of Ukraine?
With this mobilisation of funding in mind
BBC News (2022) “Ukraine War: US estimates 200,000 military casualties on all sides” Link
UNCHR (2022) “Operational Data Portal - Ukraine Refugee Situation” Link
NPR (2022) “Mariupol has fallen to Russia. Here’s what that means for Ukraine” Link
Financial Times (2023) “Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in maps” Link
European Commission (2022) “Relief and Reconstruction of Ukraine” Link
Listen to the audio Topic Overview
As spoken about above, the long and turbulent history of Russia and Ukraine finally came to a point with Russia’s invasion of the country on the 24th of February 2022. After months of support and aid from the European Union, the platform “RebuildUkraine” was announced by Ursula von der Leyen in May 2022. This platform7 outlined recovery projects, materials, and technologies required to rebuild the Ukrainian economy. The current and future plans to provide relief and reconstruction were set out by von der Leyen in a press briefing8 on the 18th of May 2022.

The briefing focused on measures already in place, and set out the European Union’s upcoming plans for 2023. In the briefing, von der Leyen established four pillars of reconstruction which will need to be focused on during the rebuilding process:
Rebuilding the country, in particular infrastructure, health services, housing and schools, as well as digital and energy resilience in line with the most recent European policies and standards.
Continue modernising the state and its institutions to ensure good governance and respect for the rule of law, by providing administrative capacity support and technical assistance, including at regional and local level.
Implementing a structural and regulatory agenda with the aim of deepening the economic and societal integration of Ukraine and its people with the EU in line with its European path.
Support the recovery of Ukraine’s economy and society by promoting sustainable and inclusive economic competitiveness, sustainable trade, and private sector development, while contributing to the green and digital transition of the country.
Rebuild Ukraine (2022) Link
European Commission (2022) “Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the European Council, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee, and the Committee of the Regions” Link
European Commission (2022) “EU Solidarity with Ukraine -Reconstruction of Ukraine” Link
From these pillars we can see the need to break the rebuilding up into four paths: Rebuilding Infrastructure, Modernisation, European Alignment, and Sustainable Economic Recovery.

Sustainability is a major instrument needed for the success of rebuilding in Ukraine. Sustainability does not only account for environmental stability, but long-term cooperation sustainability with the European Union to further align with European values, and economic sustainability.
Sustainability and resilience of Ukraine’s economy is important in both the short-term and long-term, as the transfers of aid to Ukraine has nearly completely been in the form of loans. Loans are not transfers to Ukraine and thus the funds are expected to be returned so that they are more palatable politically when budgets are tight. With Ukraine’s debt sustainability being jeopardised, solutions must strive to keep in mind economic sustainability.

A cohesion of European Union standards and regulatory alignment will further increase the sustainable partnership between the European Union and Ukraine, leading to an easier process in giving and receiving aid.
The green revolution has put a focus on reconstructing Ukraine with a focus on environmental sustainability. The non profit ReStart Ukraine, is one of a handful of initiatives of Ukraine which focuses on creating a sustainable reconstruction of the region. With the energy prices rising as mentioned below, and stakeholders looking to decrease dependency on fossil fuels, the reconstruction must focus further on rebuilding a clean and green Ukraine.

Through the upcoming sections, we will focus on looking at these areas and ask ourselves “how can we as Europeans, and as members of Civil Society Organisations, help Ukraine in the process of rebuilding under these four pillars?”
Ukraine can count on the EU's full support.
We stand ready to take a leading role in the international reconstruction efforts to help rebuild a democratic and prosperous Ukraine.
Ursula von der Leyen
President of the European Commission9
Measures in Place

Currently, there is large amounts of funding from the European Union and the United States of America being aided to Ukraine, in the form of humanitarian, military and financial aid. The European Union provided over €1.7 billion10 in grants to Ukraine through the European Neighbourhood Instrument. Since the Russian invasion began, the EU mobilised around €4.1 billion to support Ukraine’s overall economic, social and financial resilience in the form of macro-financial assistance, budget support, emergency assistance, crisis response and humanitarian aid. Through the European Peace Facility11, the European Union committed €3.1 billion12 in military assistance financing for Ukraine, including €100 million solely focused on EU training missions for Ukrainian armed forces.

On the side of rebuilding, the introduction of the “RebuildUkraine” platform, a project jointly led by Ukraine and the European Commission, has allowed stakeholders to outline key reforms and investments needed to rebuild Ukraine in a sustainable way. The platform is in place to determine the priority areas selected for financing, and the specific projects in these areas most necessary. The platform is bringing many stakeholders together under one roof, creating a synergy of projects aimed at rebuilding Ukraine’s state and economy.

Macro-financial assistance (MFA) is a form of financial aid extended by the EU to partner countries experiencing a balance of payments crisis.
European Council (2022) Link
 Congressional Research Service (2022) “Russia’s 2022 Invasion of Ukraine: European
Union Responses and U.S.-EU Relations” Link
BBC (2022) “Nord Stream 1: How Russia is cutting gas supplies to Europe” Link
New York Times (2023) “Tracking the Russian Invasion” Link
Ukraine Government (2022) Link
Official Journal of the European Union (2014) “Association Agreement” Link
 European Council (2022) “Ukraine Solidarity Fund” Link
European Council (2022) “EU Sanctions against Russia explained” Link
Britannica (N.D) “The Marshall Plan” Link
Key Stakeholders
  • Stakeholder:
    In April 2022, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the President of Ukraine, established a National Council for recovery of Ukraine.15 The Council's main functions are:

    • development of a post-war recovery strategy for Ukraine;
    • identification and preparation of proposals for priority reforms, the implementation of which is necessary in the war and postwar periods;
    • preparation of strategic initiatives, draft regulations, the adoption and implementation of which are necessary for the effective operation and recovery of Ukraine in the war and postwar periods.
  • Stakeholder:
    European Union
    The European Union has provided support to Ukraine in the last months, as stated above. Ukraine has close relations with the European Union, through the Association Agreement.16

    Efforts in support from the European Union have included the European Council developing the Ukraine Solidarity Fund17 in March 2022, the co-led “RebuildUkraine” initiative by the European Commission and the Ukrainian Government, and the wide range of sanctions18 adopted by the European Parliament against Russia.

    The European Union has stood behind Ukraine in lobbying their G7 and G20 partners in sanctioning Russia, and providing further support to the Ukrainian effort.

With the future of Ukraine looking bright, and the outpouring of support being strong from multiple global stakeholders, it is still important to look at the key conflicts and the aggression and see what possible problems could affect the rebuilding of Ukraine.

Ukraine requires a comprehensive, cohesive reconstruction, which creates synergy between all involved stakeholders. The future of Russian involvement is uncertain, so this plan must be adaptable to fit with the state of the invasion.

The upcoming year will remain as the start of the biggest recovery plan since the Marshall Plan19, without a concrete outlook of how the invasion will pan out in the upcoming months. With many sectors at risk since the start of the Russian aggression: What areas must we prioritise when rebuilding Ukraine? How can we create concrete reconstruction strategies, with flexibility for change depending on the developments in the aggression? How can the European create this plan with Ukraine’s interests at heart?

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Motion for a resolution
Submitted by:
Erik Badalyan (AM), Mauro Baumann (AT), Jacopo Bianchini (IT), Bruno Brbić (HR), Luke Carroll (IE), Jáchym Cha- loupka (CZ), Sergios Chatziavramidis (GR), Simoni Maria Koshiari (CY), Isaac McAreavey (UK), Exaucée Nkaya-NikiI (FR), Tibor Remškar (SI), Angelo Verschuren (BE), Anna Vietrova (UA), Luke Bishop (Chairperson, IE)
The European Youth Parliament aims to rebuild Ukraine’s vital infrastructure and guarantee its autonomy and sustainability during the aggression and in the long term. We strive to ensure that every resident can exercise their basic human rights such as the rights to stable housing and healthcare. The EYP aims to invest in and direct its resources on key issues regarding economic stability, access to necessities, and nurturing a stable democracy for the future,

A. Understanding that the estimated cost of the rebuilding of Ukraine amounts to USD 750 billion,

B. Recognising that the cost of the direct damage by the Russian invasion amounts to USD 97 billion,

C. Noting with concern the economic instability of Ukraine’s current national debt of USD 106.4 billion, which may affect the willingness of foreign direct investment in Ukraine,

D. Alarmed that 40% of the Ukrainian energy supply grid is damaged, leaving 10 million people without access to electricity,

E. Recognising that over 50% of Ukraine’s energy production is derived from nuclear power plants,

F. Acknowledges the vulnerability of Ukraine’s centralised energy grid to potential attacks, with one plant constituting for 40% of the energy created,

G. Taking into account that 7.6 million Ukrainian refugees have been displaced externally,

H. Realising a lack of viable housing and healthcare availability has caused 5.35 million people have been internally displaced in Ukraine,

I. Noting with regret that the economic focus on military spending has shrunk the public services budget by 10%,

J. Recognising the loss of trust in public institutions putting additional stress onto public services, due to the lack of effective barriers stopping corruption in Ukraine,

K. Alarmed by the EUR 9.8 billion damage to the Ukrainian agricultural industry in 2022,

L. Considering that up to 30% of Ukrainian transport infrastructure has been damaged;

1. Requests the European Investment Bank in collaboration with the Ukrainian government and its local authorities to salvage partially damaged buildings, providing short term housing for former refugees returning to the country;

2. Suggests the Ukranian Ministry of Economy in collaboration with the National Investment Council of Ukraine to promote the attraction of foreign direct investment (FDI) by:
a. creating a special economic zone in border areas in western Ukraine which is less affected by war,
b. expanding the special economic zone to neighbouring oblasts1 as stability and growth is proven through economic reporting,
c. further transpose these incentives into national legislation for a five year period, in the post- war period;

3. Emphasises the importance of stimulating local small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) growth through by implementing:

4. targeted tax and Value Added Tax (VAT) reductions for emerging homegrown businesses,
5. recovery packages for businesses operating in areas most impacted by the war;

6. Requests the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)2 to:
a. assess the the safety standard of Ukrainian nuclear plants,
b. provide reports to the Ukrainian Department of Energy for further implementing defence structures,
c. monitor the security operations of such plants so energy security issues are minimised, to eliminate threats of damage;

7. Urges the Directorate General Energy (DG-ENER) in collaboration with Ukrainian Ministry of Energy to invest in the renovation and upscaling of old nuclear plants up to modern environmental standards;

8. Implores the Directorate General Environment (DG-ENV) to encourage external investors to donate hydroelectric power stations utilising Ukraine’s vast river network, in order to decentralise energy production,

9. Encourages the European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO)3 to provide funding to NGOs for the establishment of humanitarian centres and first aid clinics near affected areas in order to:
a. provide medical care to injured soldiers, and evacuated and displaced people,
b. relieve hospitals and clinics from the pressure of military injuries,
c. provide psychological support to affected individuals of all ages;

10. Calls upon the DG Agriculture and Rural Development (DG AGRI) to encourage the mechanisation and modernisation of agricultural practises in Ukraine, through measures such as increasing irrigation and drainage schemes in rural areas;

11. Asks the Council of Europe in collaboration with the Group of States against Corruption (GRECO)4 to establish a non-governmental and independent organisation that is responsible for overseeing Ukrainian civilian transactions and for allocating state funding, such as Regional Anti-Corruption Initiative (RAI)5 in the Western Balkan states;

12. Further encourages the Ukrainian government to apply Connecting Europe Facility (CEF)6 funding to improve the current transport network, in order to make transport of goods less vulnerable.
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An oblast is a first level administrative division or municipality subdivision.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is an intergovernmental organisation that seeks to promote the peaceful use of nuclear energy.
The European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operation (ECHO) is a European Commission agency which provides assistance for the affected countries and populations in emergency crises and disasters.

The Group of States against Corruption (GRECO) GRECO’s objective is to improve the anti-corruption framework by monitoring with the Council of Europe anti-corruption standards through a dynamic process of mutual evaluation and peer pressure

Regional Anti-Corruption Initiative (RAI) is an intergovernmental regional organisation which uses international legal insturnments and competence framework to combat corruption in the Western Balkans.
The Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) is a multinational funding platform operating in the European Union and neighbouring countries, aimed at supporting investments in building new transport infrastructure, among others in Europe.
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