Ukraine needs $17 bln in additional financing for energy repairs - PM

Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal speaks during a conference in Berlin,
Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal speaks during a cnference on the post-war reconstruction of Ukraine, in Berlin, Germany, October 25, 2022. REUTERS/Michele Tantussi/File Photo

KYIV, Jan 27 (Reuters) - Ukraine will need an additional $17 billion in financing this year for energy repairs, de-mining and to rebuild infrastructure, Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said on Friday.

He told a government meeting that five high-voltage substations in the central, southern and south-west regions were hit during Russia's air attacks on Thursday.

The energy sector has been severely damaged following four months of Russian missile and drones attacks. Shmyhal said the government hosted a meeting with Western partners this week to coordinate financial support in a transparent and efficient way.

"This year we need to finance a huge budget deficit of about $38 billion. Another $17 billion this year will be needed for fast reconstruction of the energy, humanitarian de-mining, rebuilding of the housing, critical and social infrastructure," Shmyhal said at the meeting.

The government also said it was setting up a state agency for infrastructure recovery and development. Mustafa Nayem, a prominent former journalist who had been a deputy infrastructure minister since 2021, would head the newly-created agency.

Reporting by Olena Harmash; editing by Tom Balmforth, William Maclean

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