France is providing a guarantee worth EUR 49.4 million to support a loan of EUR 150 million that the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) previously provided to the Ukrainian Railways joint-stock company (Ukrzaliznytsia). This will help finance critical operating expenses to ensure stable rail cargo and passenger transportation, as well as evacuation and humanitarian aid services in Ukraine.

The EBRD announced this in a statement on 14 December, the CFTS portal reports.

According to the statement, the French guarantee complements another guarantee the European Union provided to Ukrzaliznytsia through its European Fund for Sustainable Development (EFSD).

“The EBRD has been working with Ukrzaliznytsia since before the war, and it has stood firmly by the rail company since Russia’s invasion. In addition to liquidity financing, the bank is currently working closely with Ukrzaliznytsia on a new sovereign-guaranteed loan of up to EUR 200 million to cover critical capital expenditure needed to improve railway connectivity with the European Union,” the statement said.

According to the statement, France is simultaneously providing a guarantee of EUR 50 million to facilitate an EBRD loan of EUR 300 million to Ukraine’s state-owned Naftogaz gas company. The financing will help Naftogaz purchase gas to guarantee gas supplies to Ukrainian customers and electricity production during the winter and beyond.

As the CFTS portal reported earlier, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development amended the loan agreement for the Dolynska - Mykolaiv - Kolosivka railway electrification project in September to allow it to repurpose an additional EUR 98.5 million for the provision of liquidity to Ukrzaliznytsia to enable the company to meet its critical needs. In June, the EBRD amended the same loan agreement to repurpose EUR 50 million for the provision of liquidity to Ukrzaliznytsia.