LUGANO, Switzerland (Reuters) – An international conference to support Ukraine after the devastating Russian invasion has outlined a series of principles to steer Kyiv’s recovery and condemned Moscow’s actions.
Representatives from more than 40 countries and international organisations like the European Investment Bank and the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) signed up to the Lugano Declaration at the two-day conference in Switzerland.
Signatories including the United States, Britain, France and Japan condemned Russia’s military aggression “in the strongest terms” and urged Moscow to withdraw its troops without delay.
Russian President Vladimir Putin sent troops into Ukraine in February in what he calls a “special military operation.” The West calls it an unprovoked attack.
The signatories welcomed commitments to provide political, financial and technical support and launched the Lugano Principles to guide the reconstruction effort, which Kyiv says could cost up to $750 billion.
The principles include partnership between Ukraine and its international supporters and a focus on domestic reforms.
The European Union has said Kyiv still needs to make progress in areas like the rule of law, reining in oligarchs, fighting corruption and ensuring fundamental rights.
Transparency, accountability and respect for the law was another of the principles, which stressed democratic participation and having the whole of Ukrainian society take part in reconstruction.
They also called for multi-stakeholder engagement, gender equality, inclusion and sustainability.
“Efficient and transparent governance by Ukraine and effective and nimble coordination between donors and with the government are critical for the recovery,” Alfred Kammer, director of the International Monetary Fund’s European department, told the conference.
“The implementation of reforms by Ukraine to strengthen institutions and public policy will support the transformation of the economy and lift growth and the living standards of the Ukrainian people.”
(Reporting by John Revill; Editing by Michael Shields)