Ukraine is set to receive £3bn in World Bank loan guarantees as Prime Minister Rishi Sunak confirmed the UK would continue to support the nation for “as long as it takes” in the fight against Russia.
Sunak will also announce a major financial support package for the eastern European country as it mounts its long-awaited counter-offensive against Putin’s illegal invasion.
It comes as the UK hosts a two-day Ukraine Recovery Conference in London, starting today, with over 400 global firms from 38 countries, including Virgin, Sanofi, Philips, Hyundai and Citi, pledging their continued support.
Sunak told City A.M. that the City of London will play a critical role in supporting Ukraine.
“The City of London has a huge amount to offer, from its deep and liquid capital markets to its world-class finance expertise,” Sunak said.
“I am incredibly proud of the role the UK has played in supporting Ukraine and I know the City will continue to be the engine room of private sector investment to ensure the country succeeds both on the battlefield and in its economic recovery,” he added.
He is expected to say today: “We’ll stand with Ukraine as they win the peace and harness all their ingenuity and defiance to build the future they deserve.
“The question for us today is what can we do to support this – to fast-track recovery and help Ukraine unleash its potential.
“We must bring to bear a partnership of governments, financial institutions, and business leaders, all of us here today… the British government will continue to play its full part.”
City of London MP Nickie Aiken said: “We should all be very proud of the ongoing support the UK continues to provide Ukraine as it fights Putin’s illegal invasion of their country.”
She added: “It’s right that we help them put in place the building blocks to rebuild their country and their economy. The City of London is an economic powerhouse and I am sure will be at the centre of supporting the Ukrainian recovery.”
Landmark financial support for the nation led by president Volodymr Zelensky, announced by Britain today, is set to include not only the loan guarantees but £240m of bilateral assistance.
Sunak is also set to expand investment in Ukraine, for public services, schools and hospitals, in the first G7 bilateral multi-year fiscal assistance package.
Non-military assistance to Ukraine by the UK now stands at above £4.7bn, including £4.1bn in fiscal support and £640m of bilateral assistance.
He will add: “The war brought a 29 per cent fall in Ukraine’s GDP last year, but look at the streets of Kyiv.
“Despite threat of attack, people are getting on with their lives and getting on with business… this is a vibrant, dynamic, creative, European country that refuses to be subdued.
“We’ll stand with Ukraine for as long as it takes as they continue to win this war.”
World Bank Group president Ajay Banga said the UK’s guarantees came at a “critical moment” and that the organisation would “help Ukrainians imagine a life after the war”.
The summit will also see the launch of a new framework for war risk insurance, backed by the G7, which will support de-risking measures to boost confidence and unlock investment.