President of Ukraine

Macro-financial support for Ukraine and strengthening EU sanctions against Russia are also weapons in the defense of freedom - President's speech at the meeting of the European Council

15 December 2022 - 14:13

Macro-financial support for Ukraine and strengthening EU sanctions against Russia are also weapons in the defense of freedom - President's speech at the meeting of the European Council

Thank you very much, Charles! Thank you very much, Mr. President!

Dear colleagues! I am glad to greet you all.

Next week, December 23, it will be six months since Ukraine obtained the status of a candidate for joining the European Union.

And we wasted no time - Ukraine and all of Europe became stronger in six months. We maintain unity - and that is why we find effective answers to any anti-European challenges. We continue to defend our common values together, and therefore together we achieve tangible victories.

In six months, we returned the territory of the Kharkiv region to Ukraine and all of Europe, returned the city of Kherson and part of the Kherson region, which were occupied by Russia at the beginning of the invasion. This liberation showed the world that our common defense is not something accidental, but an inalienable and unstoppable force of ours.

And I thank you for the large-scale and multifaceted assistance to Ukraine, which allows us to return freedom to our people, our cities, our villages. Nothing else proves the strength of Europe more clearly than the tears of gratitude in the eyes of the people we are liberating from the Russian occupation - in particular, thanks to your support.

I thank you very much!

During these six months, we started the construction of an air shield for Ukraine, and therefore - the creation of one of the key security guarantees for the whole of Europe. When we have a sufficiently powerful and modern air defense and missile defense system, we will be able to dismantle the basis of Russian terror, namely, we will destroy Russia's ability to destroy others. I am grateful to all our partners who help us with air defense and missile defense, guaranteeing the security of the entire eastern flank of Europe.

In six months, we not only preserved the full spectrum of political initiative, but also found a solution to overcome the unprecedented crises provoked by Russia.

In particular, we have taken globally useful steps to stop the food crisis and prevent a new migrant crisis, which could hit at least the entire south of our continent.

I am grateful to everyone who supported our grain export initiative, who has already joined our humanitarian initiative "Grain From Ukraine" and who helps create new logistics and export-import opportunities in all parts of Europe, which strengthen all of us.

And right now we see what internal strength Europe has to guarantee energy security and protect itself from the social outbreaks that our common enemy so hoped for.

Europe prepared for winter in conditions where Russia artificially created an absolutely insane deficit on the gas market. Now we see that this madness has hit not Europe, but the gas industry of Russia itself.

I am grateful to all of you who are helping Ukraine overcome the most cynical form of terror that has ever been on our continent - energy terror.

The Russian bet on the destruction of our energy infrastructure, our energy industry, and therefore on a humanitarian catastrophe for tens of millions of Ukrainians and all our neighboring countries in the EU remains. Therefore, we still need your support for energy, and therefore social resilience.

Dear colleagues! Europe!

The next six months will be decisive in many respects in the confrontation that Russia started with this aggression. Aggression against Ukraine and against each of you, because the ultimate target of Russia is much further than our border and Ukrainian sovereignty.

The next six months will demand even greater efforts from us than this past time.

First, Russia's energy terror must be defeated in all its forms.

Any Russian energy blackmail, any destructive actions by Russia against critical infrastructure in Ukraine or, for example, against underwater cables and gas pipelines in Europe, any attempts to destabilize the gas and oil markets or nuclear energy sector must receive strong responses from all of Europe.

From this point of view, the idea of price caps for Russian energy exports is extremely useful. The stronger such an instrument will be, the lower the price caps, the more stable the global energy market will be.

And we urge you to agree on effective price caps for oil, oil products, and gas from Russia. These price caps should definitely deprive the terrorist state of the ability to finance the war at the expense of the global market.

And the ultimate goal of the entire energy strategy of Europe should be the complete independence of our continent from dirty Russian energy resources. I assure you that, from this perspective, Ukraine will be able to become a new reliable major supplier of green energy resources for the whole of Europe.

The second is the winter resilience of Ukraine. 

Russia wants to break your security by destroying our infrastructure. Any blackouts in Ukraine are strikes at your social systems due to new waves of migration. Any attempts by Russia to show that Ukraine does not have sufficient resilience are attempts to show you, the world, that Europe does not have sufficient resilience.

Therefore I urge you to continue doing everything so that we can maintain the energy supply for Ukrainians. And I am grateful to each and every one of you who are already helping with the supply of equipment and financial support. But now, in order for the next six months to pass without upheavals, something more needs to be done.

In particular, we need support in the purchase of the volume of gas that is used to compensate for the damage caused by Russian strikes at other types of generation. It is about two billion cubic meters of gas.

We also need support with electricity for Ukraine - with supply from the EU. Just as we can help you by exporting electricity when we get our generation back up, we need your help now to get us through this winter. It is about the supply of electricity worth about eight hundred million euros.

The third aspect is defensive support. It should be no less than in the past six months. This is critically important for the protection of Ukrainian freedom and the very idea of Europe in the global confrontation with Russia.

But apart from this, we need more modern weapons, more supply.

This applies to both air defense and missile defense. And I ask each of the twenty-seven countries of the European Union to decide what specifically you can do to increase the supply of air defense and missile defense systems.

This also applies to modern tanks. There is no rational reason why Ukraine should not receive them now. I am asking you to show leadership - the first one to provide modern tanks will open this supply possibility to the whole world and will be remembered as one of the most important defenders of freedom in our time.

This also applies to longer-range artillery and missile systems that could speed up the end of Russian aggression.

All this is a direct saving of millions of lives.

The fourth is diplomacy. 

Over the past six months, we have developed and offered to the world a Peace Formula that contains everything necessary not only to end this war, but also to guarantee, reliably and permanently, that there will be no repetition of the same or the beginning of any other war in Europe.

I urge you to support the Ukrainian Peace Formula! You all know its elements - they are logical, effective, and can be implemented already in the next six months. For this purpose, in the near future we are organizing a summit - Global Peace Formula Summit.

I hope to see all of you and your leadership in helping peace at this summit. Pay attention - each of the points of our Peace Formula allows each conscientious country to show its leadership and help with this or that specific goal.

In fact, it is like a menu - for manifestations of leadership. And these are really opportunities for all countries to contribute to the security of Ukraine, the whole of Europe, and the world. These are opportunities both for those who are more active in international relations and for those who, so far, do less to protect peace.

And the fifth - for the next six months. A task based on values.

I want to thank all of you once again for supporting Ukraine in obtaining the candidate status. Now is the time to take another step.

Despite the war, we do not stop the institutional transformation of our state. This week alone, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine approved three European integration laws: the law on national communities, the law on modernization of the principles of work of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine, and on the media sphere.

And this is just one illustration of the many things we have done in order to prepare the next stage of rapprochement between Ukraine and the EU. Namely, the assessment of the implementation of the recommendations of the European Commission, which we expect from you in the near future. And we strongly ask you to do this, and to speed up this process, so that we can proceed to the start of negotiations regarding Ukraine's membership in the EU.

I believe that everything emphasized by me today will be implemented. Because for Ukraine and for Europe, when we are together, nothing is impossible. We will defeat any terror, we will implement any of our joint tasks.

I thank you for your attention! And I thank you for the support!

I would like to express special gratitude for your steps on sanctions over the past six months, for the package of financial support for our country in the amount of 18 billion euros for the next year, which can be finally approved at the leadership level right now. This is vital.

And Charles, my friend, I am asking you very much to ensure that our struggle for peace for Ukraine and for the whole of Europe does not depend on misunderstandings and controversies between some EU member states.

The packages of macro-financial support for Ukraine are also weapons in defense of freedom. Just as the ninth package of EU sanctions against Russia. This is our protection. Please understand that!

I hope that already in January we will be able to thank you for the first tranche of this macro-financial package.

Thanks again for your attention!

Long live Europe!

Glory to Ukraine!