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Ukraine seeks funds from EU to develop its arms industry - Minister

Ukraine seeks funds from EU to develop its arms industry - Minister Minister for Strategic Industries Oleksandr Kamyshyn (Getty Images)
Author: Maria Kholina

Ukraine is actively pursuing funding from the European Union to ramp up support for its domestic arms industry and engage additional capacities not tied to contracts, according to Oleksandr Kamyshyn, the Minister for Strategic Industries.

"Our objective is to secure more funds for procurement from Ukrainian arms manufacturers. We've identified several initiatives that might be implemented. In terms of scale and cost, we're efficient and capable of producing enough; the only missing piece is funding," he stated.

EU funding options

Minister Kamishin highlighted potential initiatives, one being the "expansion of the European Peace Fund to reimburse member states' expenses for equipment purchased directly from Ukraine and retained in Ukraine - it's fast, it works, it'll be great."

"Secondly, it's leveraging windfall profits from frozen Russian assets, up to 3 billion euros, and integrating Ukrainian procurements into this program. Looking at Ukraine's defense industry, we've built a robust machine capable of swift operation - all we need now is to fuel it with stable resources, which can only come from profits derived from frozen Russian assets; without this, we cannot continue operations," Kamishin added.

He further outlined a third initiative, which involves "including procurements from Ukrainian manufacturers in the European Defense Industrial Development Program (EDIP)."

"We're not looking to compete; we're doing simple things that work efficiently and inexpensively, and we'll complement the European industry. Together, our combined potential will be sufficient to deter any aggressor," Kamishin affirmed.

Ukraine's arms production

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has previously emphasized the need to strengthen domestic arms production to ensure the country's security and ability to provide a decisive response to any aggression from Russia.

Ukraine has already achieved significant successes in this direction. Developments in long-range weaponry, including a new version of the Neptune missile, are progressing well. It was recently announced that serial production of drones, equivalent to Iranian Shahed, has commenced.

There has been a substantial increase in the production of ammunition. According to Oleksandr Kamyshyn, the Minister for Strategic Industries, mine production has increased by 42 times, while artillery shells have nearly tripled.

To coordinate efforts in the defense-industrial complex, the Cabinet of Ministers has established an Industrial-Defense Committee. Arms manufacturers, independent experts, and specialists will be involved in its operations.