Press Releases

PRESS RELEASE : Russia’s war is devastating the economy of Ukraine – UK statement to the OSCE [June 2023]

The press release issued by the Foreign Office on 15 June 2023.

At the 2023 Struga Conference on the Economic and Environmental Dimension of the OSCE, Justin Addison (UK Delegation to the OSCE) says Ukraine’s economic growth has been destroyed by Russia.

Excellencies, dear colleagues,

The theme of this conference is ‘Promoting security and stability through economic growth.’ But we cannot ignore that one participating State – Ukraine – has had their economic growth destroyed because another – Russia – launched a full-scale illegal and unprovoked invasion against their sovereign neighbour.

Russia’s war has had a devastating impact on the economy and environment of Ukraine, and profound impacts for the OSCE region. As ambassador Hasani said in opening remarks, in March the World Bank estimated that the cost of rebuilding Ukraine stood at $411 billion. We have heard in this forum of the devastating consequences of the war on Ukraine’s ecosystem and the wider environment.

Last week we witnessed the appalling destruction of the Kakhovka Dam. This was an abhorrent act which, if it does prove to have been an intentional attack, would fit the pattern of behaviour by Russia during this war of deliberately targeting civilian infrastructure.

Assessment of impacts are ongoing, but it is anticipated that hundreds of thousands could face water shortages and contamination, as well as interruption to electricity supplies. There is also a risk of mines dislodging and threatening lives and livelihoods. On 10 June the UK set out an additional £16 million of humanitarian support as Ukraine deals with the aftermath of the flooding.

As the international community comes together to provide economic assistance to Ukraine, we must continue our efforts to hinder Russia. The UK will introduce new measures against key sectors of the Russian economy and those in Russia and outside who are supporting or profiting from Putin’s war.

I would like to finish by drawing attention to the Ukraine Recovery Conference in London next week, which will help build a modern, resilient Ukrainian economy that strengthens the rule of law, tackles corruption and promotes reform.

Thank you.