Germany launches pooling platform to support Ukraine’s reconstruction
The German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development on Monday (27 March) launched a new digital platform to reinforce German commitment to the reconstruction process in Ukraine.
With the platform’s launch, Germany’s Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, Svenja Schulze, intends to advance preparations for reconstruction in Ukraine at an early stage. The new pooling platform aims to connect non-state actors, exchange information, and boost economic opportunities for the businesses involved.
“The platform is designed to become a venue for networking, dialogue and information gathering in order to unite people who would otherwise not be able to get together,” she said.
“The German state contribution to the reconstruction of Ukraine can be significantly strengthened through the engagement of business, civil society, municipalities and academia.”
“Ukrainians very much appreciate German solidarity. It is encouraging that new trusting partnerships between our people are now emerging from this solidarity-based support,” stated Ukrainian ambassador to Germany Oleksii Makeiev.
The platform serves as a first point of contact for all non-state actors based in Germany who want to get involved in the reconstruction process. It seeks to provide businesses with economic opportunities by answering the frequently asked question, “how can I get involved?”
Apart from providing networking opportunities and dialogue between actors involved in the reconstruction process, the platform comprises the website “Plattform Wiederaufbau Ukraine.” It is a resource for participants to receive information about offers, upcoming events and funding opportunities by the German government.
Additionally, it bundles individual initiatives and projects and creates synergies, for example, between municipal and private sector involvement.
In a step-by-step approach and in line with the demand and participation of stakeholders, the information offered on the website will be expanded over time.
Ukraine reconstruction: Progress in coordination and use of Russian assets
There is progress in the use of Russian assets to fund reconstruction efforts in Ukraine, and donor countries have established a structure to better coordinate financial assistance, Commissioner Valdis Dombrovskis said during the EU executive’s visit to Kyiv.
Content and Scope
The platform’s content will cover topics related to technical, logistical, climate-friendly, and social questions, ranging from “how to reconstruct houses cost-efficiently” to “how to deal with war traumas.”
The platform also covers partnership programmes of the Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, including 135 partnerships between German and Ukrainian municipalities, eight partnerships between water utilities from Germany and Ukraine, and 13 partnerships in the sphere of medical care to provide Ukrainian hospitals with medical equipment and training.
While the platform is available to Ukrainian and international partners, it does not intend to replace existing international cooperation bodies. Also excluded from the services on the platform are financial support and donations.
“Ukrainians very much appreciate German solidarity. It is encouraging that new trusting partnerships between our people are now emerging from this solidarity-based support,” stated Oleksii Makeiev.
Towards a Marshall plan? EU, G7 discuss Ukraine reconstruction
Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz called for a Marshall plan ahead of Tuesday’s (25 October) Berlin conference on the reconstruction of Ukraine as the war-torn country struggles with worsening economic conditions and limited financial assistance.
Minister for development Svenja Schulze also announced that the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development would continue supporting its network of partnerships by allocating a further 25 million euros in 2023. This includes two million euros for partnerships with water utilities in the neighbouring country Moldova.
“Moldova is directly affected by the repercussions of the war. Russia is trying to destabilise the EU accession candidate and divert it from its pro-European course,” she explained.
Early stage planning
“It is particularly important for Ukraine that we are not only provided with assistance and donations but also that goods are purchased abroad. Trade will support us because it creates jobs,” emphasised Oleksii Makeiev.
In the future, cooperation between German retail chains and large shops will ensure a wider range of Ukrainian products reaching German supermarket shelves and clothing racks.
“The reconstruction of Ukraine is already beginning, although there is, unfortunately, no end to the war yet. This long-term perspective and early-stage planning are vital for the resilience of Ukrainian society,” concluded Svenja Schulze.