EU enhances support for transport connectivity in Ukraine through EIB agreements
At the EU-Ukraine Association Council meeting held today in Brussels, the European Investment Bank (EIB) agreed with the Ukrainian Government on a series of new financing operations. The EU bank will lend €50m to finance transport connectivity and infrastructure improvements throughout the country.
Ukraine and the EIB also signed a €10m grant agreement under the multi-donor E5P fund that supports municipal investments in energy-efficiency and environmental projects in the Eastern Partnership countries. The grant will help finance the implementation of a Ukraine Higher Education Project, which the EIB is already supporting. Furthermore, the EIB concluded a Memorandum of Understanding with the Ukrainian Ministry of Education and Science for the preparation of a project to create several centres of excellence in the country.
EIB Vice-President Vazil Hudák commented: “Together with other EU institutions, the EIB is committed to improve the everyday life of Ukraine’s citizens. The projects signed today will result in faster and safer transport infrastructure, better academic facilities and more resources for higher education programmes, all of which will strengthen the country’s competitiveness”.
Prime Minister of Ukraine Volodymyr Groysman said: “Infrastructure development and large logistics projects are Government priorities for 2019. This is our advantage, and we will develop it. And also educational projects. The Government has been implementing an education reform for a year now, and we consider investment in human capital to be paramount.”
The €50m EIB loan to improve connectivity in Ukraine and in the Eastern Neighbourhood provides support for transport projects expected to have significant positive local impacts. Road safety, connectivity, and traffic management and control projects are under consideration, with a view to contributing to the economic development of Ukraine.
The project’s first phase will focus on the development of intelligent transport system on national roads, the construction of a missing section of the northern by-pass around the city of Ternopil forming part of the extended TEN-T (Trans-European Transport Networks), and a number of multi-level railway crossings. Furthermore, the project will support the development of future investment in railway connections between the European Union and Ukraine. The project is backed by a €14m EU grant for the Ternopil bypass investment and a €1.85m EU grant for project preparation and implementation. Both grants are being provided under the Neighbourhood Investment Platform (NIP).
The €10m E5P grant will be instrumental in implementing the Ukraine Higher Education Project that has already received a €120m loan from the EIB and €30m from Nordic Environment Finance Corporation (NEFCO). The grant will be used to finance, in particular, seven universities in the cities of Chernihiv, Kharkiv, Kyiv, Lviv, Poltava, Sumy and Vinnitsa in order to significantly reduce the energy consumption of their buildings with positive environmental impacts. The project is also supported by a €3m EU grant from the Neighbourhood Investment Facility (NIF) to assist implementation arrangements.
The Ukraine Vocational Education and Training Project is expected to improve the quality of vocational education and training in Ukraine. The project promoter is the Ministry of Education and Science (MOES). With the signature of the Memorandum of Understanding, EIB and MOES have agreed to prepare a project that would focus on infrastructure investments to create several centres of excellence throughout Ukraine.
The format and content will be developed in line with the reform agenda being prepared and implemented by the Government of Ukraine in this sector. An EIB loan to support the project is envisaged, subject to the approval of the Bank’s governing bodies.