Ukrainian president thanks Dutch Royals for support; NL guarantees €100 mil. loan
President Volodymyr Zelensky thanked King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima for their support of the Ukrainian people. "My wife Olena and I are sincerely grateful for their Majesties King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima for their warm words of support to the people of Ukraine," Zelensky wrote on Twitter. The Netherlands is giving a guarantee to the World Bank with which Ukraine can borrow an extra 100 million euros. The Cabinet hopes that this will support the country's economy and prevent the state treasury from running out, the Ministry of Finance said.
The World Bank asked shareholders, including the Netherlands, for more money. There are currently 350 million euros available for Ukraine, but the country needs more resources. With the guarantee from the Netherlands, the organization can borrow money on the financial market. That has become much more difficult for Ukraine itself after Russia invaded the country.
"Ukraine deserves our support in every way possible, in this case through the World Bank," Finance Minister Sigrid Kaag said. According to her Ministry, the Netherlands will retain the option to use the guarantee differently if the incumbent regime of President Zelensky and Prime Minister Denys Shymbal is ousted. In that case, the Netherlands will use the money "to benefit" the Ukrainian population."
The Russian army invaded Ukraine on Thursday. Since then, many Ukrainians have fled their homes and their country. "We resist the invasive aggression. Today, more than ever, it is important for us to feel that we are not alone," Zelensky said in his tweet thanking the Dutch Royals.
Over the weekend, King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima expressed their "intense" sympathy with the inhabitants of Ukraine. "Our hearts go out to the people of Ukraine and to all those affected by the violence," they said in a statement. The King and QUeen said they also sympathize with the Ukrainian community in the Netherlands, "which is afraid of the fate of their family and friends."
Earlier, Zelenski also thanked Britain's Prince William and his wife Catherine for their support. King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima are currently still on a skiing holiday, traditionally in Lech.
Reporting by ANP