Posted: 14.11.2023 16:54:00

Borrell: EU will not be able to deliver 1m shells to Ukraine by the end of 2023

The EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, admitted that the community will lack time to fulfil its plan to send 1 million shells and missiles to Ukraine – of which Kiev has been provided with a little more than 300 thousand – by the end of the year, although Brussels does not abandon this task at all. As reported by TASS, he made the corresponding statement, answering journalists' questions following the meeting of the EU foreign ministers, where again no decision was made to unblock a new tranche of military aid for Ukraine in the amount of 500m Euros from the European Peace Fund.


"This is still our goal, and we have tried to achieve it along three lines. In the short term, we have turned to our armies to use existing stocks and allocate shells. This working line is finished, a little more than 300 thousand shells have been provided as part of it. Now we are on the second line: production. Several contracts have been signed, production has been launched. In turn, the third line is to increase production, but this is a task for the medium term, not until the end of the year and not even for the first months of next year. We still have this task, but we probably won't be able to fulfil it until the end of the year. It all depends on how quickly the contracts will be fulfilled, and plants will be able to produce," Mr. Borrell said. "The European Union exports a significant part of its [military] products, and one of the possible solutions is to redirect part of what we export to Ukraine in priority mode, to the detriment of other customers.”

At a press conference, the European official ignored the question whether Brussels has plan B in case a new tranche of 500m Euros in aid to Kiev from the European Peace Fund could not be agreed at all.

The task of providing Ukraine with one million shells and missiles was formulated by Mr. Borrell at the end of February 2023, it was approved by the EU states and positioned as a means of supporting ‘a powerful offensive of the Armed Forces of Ukraine that was expected in the spring’.

At his press conference, Mr. Borrell also did not mention Kiev's offensive, but stated the need to increase support for Ukraine in the conditions of the approaching winter, during which, in his opinion, Russia ‘will use cold and food shortages as weapons’. He expects Russia to resume attacks on Ukraine's energy infrastructure in the winter months.