The European Parliament on Thursday approved a proposal for new financial aid to Ukraine worth 18 billion euros (about $18.7 billion) for 2023, though the plan remains blocked by Hungary.
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The proposal was approved by 507 votes in favor, with 38 votes against and 26 abstentions.
The president of the European Parliament, Roberta Metsolawelcomed the result of the vote, claiming that “It is important not only because of the much-needed funding it makes available to the people of Ukraine, but it is also important for democracy.”
This aid for 2023, in the form of loans whose interest would be borne by the Member States, had been launched in early November by the European Commission, with the idea of proceeding with the first disbursements in January.
Nevertheless, Hungarywhich maintains a troubled relationship with the European institutions, refuses to authorize the joint loan.
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This same Thursday, the Hungarian government announced the granting of financial aid to Ukraine for 187 million euros.
In this way, the Hungarian veto of the proposal voted in Parliament prevents in practice its formal approval in the Council of the EU.
Hungary maintains a bitter controversy with the European Commission (executive arm of the EU), which questions Hungary’s respect for the rule of law and for that reason could withhold European funds that would normally correspond to it.
This Thursday, the MEPs denounced the attitude of the Hungarian government.
In another text voted on Thursday, they deplored “That the Hungarian authorities continue to abuse the European unanimity rule to block essential decisions.”
The International Monetary Fund has estimated the needs of Ukraine between three and four billion euros a month in 2023.