G7 Agrees to Expand Economic Aid to Ukraine to $39 Bil.

Finance Minister Shunichi Suzuki speaks during a press conference after the meeting of G7 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors on the sidelines of G20 financial conclave on the outskirts of Bengaluru, India, on Thursday.

BENGALULU, India (Jiji Press) — Finance ministers and central bank governors of the Group of Seven major powers Thursday agreed to boost this year’s financial and economic support for Ukraine to $39 billion from $32 billion.

“We reaffirm our unwavering support for Ukraine and unity in our condemnation of Russia’s war of aggression,” the G7 officials said in a statement adopted at a meeting in Bengaluru, India, the day before the first anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“Our sanctions have significantly undermined Russia’s capacity to wage its illegal war,” the statement said. “We will continue to closely monitor the effectiveness of sanctions and take further actions as needed.”

The G7 members — Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States plus the European Union — confirmed their unity toward an early end to the war. They also called for other countries to join sanctions against Russia.

At the meeting, Japan, this year’s G7 president, announced its fresh aid of $5.5 billion to Ukraine, Finance Minister Shunichi Suzuki told a news conference. “We must play our role as president.”

Regarding sanctions against Russia, he said, “We’ll continue working with our partners to prevent attempts to evade or circumvent sanctions.”

The G7 statement confirmed a commitment to “limiting negative economic spillovers,” naming energy and food crises worsened by Russia’s war, as well as huge debts and capital outflows afflicting developing countries following U.S. and European interest rate hikes, as major problems facing the world economy.

The G7 economies also confirmed their past statements warning against excessive and disruptive movements of foreign exchange rates.

Ukrainian Finance Minister Sergii Marchenko attended the meeting remotely, asking for additional aid with no end in sight to Russia’s military aggression.

The gathering was timed to coincide with a three-day meeting of finance ministers and central bank governors of the Group of 20 advanced and emerging economies in Bengaluru from Thursday.

This year’s G20 president is India, which has not joined the international campaign to impose sanctions on Russia for its aggression against Ukraine.

The G20 members will discuss the energy and food crises and the debt issue. But it is uncertain whether participants can reach agreement.

Ahead of the G7 meeting, Suzuki met with his Indian counterpart, Nirmala Sitharaman. The two officials agreed to work closely over the debt issue and crypto asset regulations, according to Indian government officials.

Also on Thursday, the G7 economies agreed with the International Monetary Fund on additional aid to help war-torn Ukraine rebuild itself. The IMF is believed to be considering up to $16 billion in fresh aid.