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Ukraine receives less than half of promised shells from EU, Zelenskyy says

Ukraine receives less than half of promised shells from EU, Zelenskyy says President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy (Photo:
Author: Daria Shekina

Ukraine has received around 30% of the promised one million shells from the European Union, states Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy at a joint press conference with Bulgarian Prime Minister Nikolai Denkov.

"As for Europe and that percentage you mentioned, it's not quite accurate. Out of the one million shells promised to us by the European Union, not 50% arrived, but 30%. Unfortunately," says Zelenskyy.

Earlier, the EU's representative for foreign affairs and security policy, Josep Borrell, stated that by March, the EU would deliver 524,000 shells to Ukraine. This is 52% of the set target. However, Borrell pointed out that not all member states have yet sent their contributions.

Shells for Ukraine

At the end of January 2024, Bloomberg reported that the European Union would not be able to provide the promised one million shells to Ukraine by the previously set deadline of March 1, 2024. By that time, EU countries would only amass 600,000 munitions. According to EU Commissioner for Finance Johannes Hahn, the EU will be able to produce up to 2 million artillery munitions annually for Ukraine starting from 2025.

In March 2023, EU defense and foreign ministers agreed on a plan for joint procurement of ammunition. It envisaged providing Ukraine with 1 million shells over the next 12 months, involving seven countries. However, by November, the EU informed members that it was unlikely to deliver the promised 1 million artillery shells to Ukraine. This plan was supposed to be fulfilled by March 2024.

At the end of November, EU Commissioner for the Internal Market Thierry Breton, citing statistical data, stated that by spring 2024, the production capacity of defense enterprises in the EU would exceed one million artillery shells. However, the transfer of munitions to Ukraine requires a corresponding decision, which has not yet been made.