Belgian law allows such a procedure. Ukraine will receive 1.7 billion euros ($1.8 billion) in taxes on interest generated by Russian funds frozen after Moscow’s invasion, Belgian Prime Minister Alexandre De Croo said.
The money will be provided to Kyiv in 2024, Alexander De Croo said at a press conference in Brussels held jointly with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
According to a government official, Belgium has already allocated 600 million euros, which will go to Ukraine this year on the same basis.
“Taxes on the interest from these assets should go 100% to the benefit of the Ukrainian people,” De Croo said. The G7’s decision to freeze Russian assets immediately after the Kremlin invaded in February 2022 resulted in about $300 billion being frozen in participating countries.
The lion’s share is held in Europe – much of it in Belgium, home to Euroclear, the company that processes international securities transactions.
De Croo said “hundreds of billions” of euros in Russian assets were frozen, generating “billions” in interest.
Although Ukraine has called for all Russian money to go to post-war reconstruction, G7 countries reject outright confiscation as fraught with legal problems and a violation of global norms.
But money raised through interest – at European Central Bank interest rates – is fair game, they argue.
De Croo said Belgian law allows for such a procedure and suggested other EU countries could follow suit.
Zelensky was in Belgium to participate in the meeting of NATO defense ministers.