The cost of weapons for Ukraine has been commented it has exceeded the EU’s ability to pay and the supply may be reduced in the near future.
The cost of arms for Ukraine is a big burden for the European Union, while Kyiv is demanding more and more military aid, said Jacopo Barigazzi, an analyst with Politico newspaper.
A few days after the start of the Ukraine conflict, the European Union allocated 500 million euros in reparations to those countries that would donate weapons and military equipment to Kyiv.
Experts at the time thought that 85% of the cost could be reimbursed, but the fighting did not stop, and Kyiv demanded more and more weapons. The above fact clearly shows that such an amount is not enough.
“A publicly available EU fund created to help countries supplying arms to Ukraine increasingly fails to respond to a flood of refund requests, and fails to even send the first payment.” Politico clearly stated.
Realizing that the above amount was not red, Brussels agreed to a larger amount – 1.5 billion euros. After that, countries began to receive the first deductions. However, the EU announced that the fund could only cover 46% of the costs that European countries had to pay, not the 85% as promised.
This caused strong discontent across Europe. For example, Poland – one of the largest arms suppliers to Ukraine has expressed particular displeasure.
With a budget of 500 million euros, Brussels received a bill of 600 million euros, the budget only met 85%. But for 1.5 billion euros, Brussels took requests for up to 3.3 billion euros, bringing the payout ratio down to around 46 percent. The article said Poland accounted for more than half of that total.
Warsaw sent Brussels a receipt of 1.8 billion euros for military supplies. In the end, Poland had to agree to a much smaller payment than what the EU had promised earlier.
According to the author, now the EU is running out of weapons while Ukraine is increasingly demanding more. At the same time, Brussels could not settle the damage to European countries. All of this hurts the reputation of the block.
“The diminishing payback plan risks damaging the EU’s reputation as a reliable military partner, just as Ukraine is looking to Europe for more weapons to support a counter-offensive. attack and resist Russian bombardment”.
“Currently, EU powers Germany and France are being criticized for not providing enough funding, while some smaller countries say they are running out of supplies,” the Politico publication said.
The analyst emphasizes that at the beginning of the conflict, the EU used an unorthodox way to supply Ukraine with weapons, as EU treaties prohibit the bloc from using its regular budget to finance military-related activities.
So officials have taken advantage of the so-called European Peace Fund, a funding tool that goes beyond the usual budget, to help speed arms shipments. Journalist Barigazzi emphasized: “The reimbursement fund itself is a wise detour for the EU at the beginning of the conflict.”
Previously, this fund was used to fund the Georgian Army or support EU training missions in Mozambique. It now acts as a “front-runner” in the Ukraine conflict, and Brussels is gradually increasing its budget.
Currently, the UK has allocated about $2.5 billion to cover the costs of European Union member states supplying Kyiv with weapons.