Ukraine’s Rada approved a draft budget for 2023 in a closed session. The spending plan has a $30 billion deficit which Kiev largely expects to be covered by Washington. The White House has sent Ukraine tens of billions in aid since Russia invaded in February.
Yaroslav Zheleznyak, the first deputy chairman of parliament’s finance, tax and customs policy committee, said the first reading was passed by the legislature on Friday. The spending package will need to be resubmitted before receiving final approval.
Andrii Pyshnyi, the newly appointed head of Ukraine’s central bank, said the budget includes a $30 billion shortfall. He indicated that Kiev’s international partners are willing to cover the deficit.
Last month, Ukraine’s Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal noted the government expected a $38 billion deficit. He said the US would provide $18 billion and the European Union and International Monetary Fund would combine to cover $12 billion.
Over the past seven months, the White House has spent nearly $70 billion on the war in Ukraine, including large sums in weapons transfers, as well as direct assistance to the government to help cover gaping budget shortfalls.
New rounds of Western aid to Ukraine are announced almost daily, with USAID announcing $55 million in assistance for Kiev last Thursday, while the IMF followed up with $1.3 billion in additional emergency funding just one day later.
Still, Kiev says aid is not flowing fast enough. On Monday, Oleg Ustenko, an economic advisor to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, told EU members that they must increase the pace of funds and that delays are “not acceptable.”
This article was originally featured at Antiwar.com and is republished with permission.