Spain and Ukraine strengthen bilateral cooperation in economic, financial and digital matters

Jul 24, 2023 | Current affairs, Featured, Revista Lloseta, Thursday Daily Bulletin, Tradition

The First Vice-President, Nadia Calviño, held a videoconference with the Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine, Yuliya Svyrydenko, in which they discussed financial aid, bilateral cooperation and also the priorities of the Spanish Presidency of the Council of the European Union.

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Spain and Ukraine

At the meeting, the First Vice-President expressed the commitment of the Spanish Presidency of the Council of the European Union to provide a stable framework of financial support to Ukraine in the context of the mid-term review of the Multiannual Financial Framework in January 2024.

The Vice-President informed Svyrydenko of the conclusions reached last Friday at the first meeting of Ministers of Economy and Finance (ECOFIN) of the Spanish Presidency, at which the European Commission presented its proposal for a new financial instrument for Ukraine and at which the ministers unanimously expressed the need to support the country, in collaboration with international partners.

Cooperation in cybersecurity
Precisely today, Spain and Ukraine have signed a memorandum of understanding to strengthen cooperation in cyber defence, as a preliminary step to the construction of a common system for responding to cyber threats.

This is a memorandum of understanding sealed between Spain’s National Cybersecurity Institute INCIBE and the Ukrainian counterpart body (SSSCIP), during an official visit of the Spanish delegation to Kyiv.

Cooperation between the agencies will focus on the exchange of information on cyber threats, as well as recommendations and best practices aimed at improving the respective systems for incident management, incident response and recovery after cyber incidents.

At the same time, special attention will be given to legislative aspects and strategic, technical and academic information and communication technologies.

Specifically, key areas of cooperation include the contribution to the establishment of bilateral channels of information exchange to identify and respond to threats in cyberspace; bilateral cooperation in cyber defence and cybersecurity, as well as the exchange of technical cooperation on threats and vulnerabilities; the exchange of experiences and best practices related to cyber protection by conducting joint cyber lessons, formations, training and drills, implementation of joint programs with universities and R&D centres; development of regional cyber incident response centres; support for the design and implementation of national cybersecurity strategies of both countries.

Spain’s Support to Ukraine
Spain is firmly committed to Ukraine in all areas. Financially, it has contributed to various funds within the framework of the European Union and multilateral institutions, including the European Commission’s European Peace Facility (320 million euros), the World Bank Group’s fund to maintain Ukraine’s administrative capacity and basic services (47.9 million euros); the World Bank’s HEAL program, aimed at repairing health infrastructure in Ukraine (up to EUR 100 million) or the contribution to the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) to assist Ukrainian municipalities and protect food security (EUR 100 million).

This assistance has recently been reinforced by the signing, last week, of a guarantee agreement for up to EUR 70 million for the new European Investment Bank (EU for Ukraine) program.

In addition, a proposal has recently been agreed to create a CESCE coverage line for supplier credit operations in Ukraine for an amount of 30 million euros.

In the humanitarian field, Spain has taken in more than 180,000 displaced refugees from Ukraine under temporary protection, guaranteeing them free access to the Spanish health and education systems.

Presidency priorities
During the meeting, the Vice-President explained the priorities of the Spanish Presidency in the economic and financial fields.

The Spanish presidency will work to promote a set of fundamental dossiers to define the economic framework for the coming years with three main areas of work: deepening the economic and monetary union and having a fiscal framework at the European and national levels that guarantees financial stability and allows to address the necessary investments for the double green and digital transition; promoting an ambitious European strategy to strengthen competitiveness and reinforce our strategic, technological and energy autonomy; strengthening the role of the EU as a global player, especially enhancing the relationship with Latin America and the Caribbean.