Ukrainian consul general outlines cost of invasion and needs of agricultural sector | 2022-05-02

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has forced 18% of Ukraine’s economy to shut down completely, resulting in a national loss of over US$600 billion to date.

This was just some of the information Oleksandr Plodysti, Consul General of Ukraine in Gdansk, Poland, shared with World Council of Credit Unions President and CEO Elissa McCarter LaBorde during April 22 meeting organized by the Polish National Association of Savings and Credit Cooperatives (NACSCU).

Plodysti said these economic losses are due to the death and displacement of Ukrainian civilians, as well as the physical devastation of Ukraine. Citing figures compiled by the Ukrainian government, Plodysti said Russian forces destroyed at least:

  • 300 bridges.
  • 324 health establishments.
  • 1,042 schools.
  • 300 kindergartens.

These economic impacts weigh on credit unions in Ukraine. Leaders of credit union partners in the World Council’s Agricultural Producer Credit Project (PAC) told us that death, displacement and destruction are causing them a cash flow problem, as many of their members are simply not able to repay their loans, while others withdraw their savings at a high rate.

In partnership with NACSCU President and Global Council Board Chairman Rafal Matusiak, McCarter LaBorde spent part of the week looking at ways to help Ukrainian credit unions alleviate these liquidity issues.

A need for food security

As the World Council provides agricultural loan support to more than 20 Ukrainian credit unions through our CAP project, McCarter LaBorde also discussed with Plodysti ways to continue to further support Ukrainian farmers through our cooperatives. partner credit.

Plodysti provided McCarter LaBorde with a recent letter that Ukraine’s Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food sent to the European Union Commissioner for Agriculture, which outlines the greatest needs of the country’s 25,000 farmers. More specifically, the Ministry indicated that it was necessary to:

  • 160 million euros of financing for the purchase of seeds, fuel, phytosanitary products and fertilizers.
  • 70 million euros of vegetable and soybean seeds.
  • 30 million of winter wheat seeds.
  • 100 million euros for the conservation of cattle and other livestock.
  • 30 million euros for veterinary medicine and livestock development.

Last week, the Global Council also held separate meetings in Poland with USAID and the United Nations Office for Coordinated Humanitarian Assistance (UNOCHA) on future opportunities to support Ukrainian agricultural needs through agricultural cooperatives. credit.

To learn more about the World Council’s April 19-22 trip to Poland, visit its Ukrainian blog on crisis response.

Lana T. Arthur