Switzerland to step up its commitment to Ukraine

Municipal employees receive residents for consultation in an office.
Switzerland will further pursue and strengthen Swiss support for the private sector. (A small farm company in the Ukrainian Carpathians.)

Peace promotion, humanitarian aid and sustainable urban planning are new components of Switzerland's strategy on cooperation with Ukraine for the period from 2015 to 2018.  In addition Switzerland plans to build on tried and tested elements of its support in the areas of healthcare, decentralisation, energy efficiency and the private sector.

Switzerland's new strategy on cooperation with Ukraine for 2015–2018 continues its engagement in the country to date and at the same time expands its field of activity.  The new dimensions respond to two central developments: the change in the situation as a result of the armed conflict in the country and the government's efforts to carry out reforms.

The activities planned in each of Switzerland's four areas of activity thus respond to the conflict and its consequences. They will be carried out, as before, by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) of the FDFA and the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research (EAER). In addition, the Human Security Division (HSD) of the FDFA and Swiss Humanitarian Aid, part of the SDC, will now participate in implementing the strategy:

  • Governance and peacebuilding
    A peacebuilding dimension will now be added to Switzerland's support for local governance and decentralisation.

  • Health promotion
    The SDC, which has been active for more than 10 years in the field of maternal and child health, will now extend its activities to include promoting primary healthcare and preventing non-communicable diseases, in particular in communities affected by the conflict.

     

  • Energy and sustainable urban development 
    The State Secretariat for Economic Affairs' engagement in the field of energy efficiency will now include promoting sustainable urban planning.

     

  • Sustainable economic development
    The strategy will further pursue and strengthen Swiss support for the private sector, in particular by helping to create a better environment for business and finance and by promoting small and medium-sized enterprises.

Switzerland's activities in Ukraine

Two new Swiss actors

New Swiss actors will be involved in developing and implementing the new cooperation strategy programme:  In addition the SDC and SECO, which have been active in Ukraine for more than 15 years, the Human Security Division (HSD) and Swiss Humanitarian Aid will supplement Switzerland's activities in Ukraine. 

The HSD will focus primarily on the conflict situation in the east of the country to continue the efforts Switzerland undertook during its chairmanship of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE). In addition to various bilateral projects Switzerland plans to step up its participation in the OSCE's monitoring.  It will aim to improve relations between the conflicting parties, promote respect for human rights and international humanitarian law, and strengthen the key political processes needed to resolve the conflict 

Swiss Humanitarian Aid is responding to the humanitarian situation and has given funding to the activities of organisations such as the ICRC, the World Food Programme (WFP) and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). 

The Swiss cooperation office in Kyiv will also be provided with additional staff and its budget will be substantially increased from CHF 57 million for the 2011–2014 period to almost CHF 100 million for 2015–2018. SECO remains the largest contributor to Switzerland's cooperation programme in Ukraine.

Support for the most vulnerable groups

Switzerland's involvement will be neutral and impartial and will be strengthened in those regions directly affected by the conflict and/or those with a large number of displaced persons. It will aim to support the development of the country, including the poor, the most disadvantaged and minority groups.

Difficult context

Switzerland's new strategy on cooperation with Ukraine for 2015–2018 has been developed in the context of the current turbulent socio-political and geostrategic context. The annexation of Crimea in violation of international law in spring 2014 and the outbreak of armed conflict in the Donbass region are two factors behind the internal and international tensions. Large numbers of people have been forced to find refuge in other parts of the country. Ukrainian society has polarised and poverty is increasing. 

This is all taking place against the backdrop of a major economic crisis involving a dramatic fall-off in industrial production and the devaluation of the national currency, which has lost half its value in one year.  These are just two indicators of the extent of the economic collapse under way.

Urgent reform needed

The armed conflict and its economic consequences, which the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and other agencies have provided massive financial support to overcome, have made clear the urgent need for the country to restore its finances and carry out radical and rapid structural reforms. 

Under pressure from western creditors and the domestic reformist movement the Kyiv government has undertaken first steps to reorganise the power structure, the economy and the workings of the state. 

Building a new system

This situation has presented Ukraine with an enormous challenge but also an opportunity to make major decisions on the direction of a new, more modern and efficient system, one based on the principles of the rule of law and market economics, democracy and transparency that will put an end to corruption which is one of the main problems of contemporary Ukrainian society. For the lenders, this necessary reorientation offers an opportunity to contribute to the development of the country through supporting its strategic priorities. 

 

Object 1 – 12 of 38

Mental Health for Ukraine (MH4U)

01.03.2024 - 29.02.2028

The Mental Health for Ukraine project is a flagship Swiss engagement which strengthens the capacity and resilience of the mental health system in a context of growing demand and resource scarcity. Switzerland renews its multi-year commitment and pursues a tailored approach addressing acute mental health needs as a consequence of the conflict. The project contributes to the overall resilience of the Ukrainian people, aligns with government priorities and supports Ukraine’s reform path.


Restoring livelihoods and revitalizing rural communities affected by mines and explosive remnants of war

01.03.2024 - 31.12.2027

Humanitarian demining is one of the priorities of Swiss international cooperation program. The Federal Council decided that a total of CHF 100 million will be earmarked for humanitarian demining for 2024-2027. SDC will contribute to the restoration of agricultural livelihood activities in areas severely impacted by the war to reduce the need for external support for rural households, small-scale farmers and local producers in three focal oblasts: Kharkivska, Mykolaivska and Khersonska.


Ukraine: Humanity and Inclusion Strengthening capacities of mine action actors

01.02.2024 - 31.12.2027

SDC will contribute to Humanity and Inclusion’s project to accelerating the effectiveness of mine action efforts through innovative Non-Technical survey, increasing awareness among the conflict-affected population about the risks of explosive ordnance, and delivering tailored victims’ assistance services to conflict-affected vulnerable people.


UKR UNDP Innovative finance mine action

01.11.2023 - 30.09.2024

To date an estimated 25% of Ukrainian territory has been exposed to active conflict and may be contaminated with landmines and explosive ordnances. Under the umbrella of UNDP, experts from the finance sector and the mine action sector will assess ways to involve private investors in the long-term financing of mine action in Ukraine. The UK, the Netherlands and Switzerland contribute to the financing of this study. 


UA Anticorruption & Asset Recov. Support

01.10.2023 - 30.09.2026

The devastating situation caused by the ongoing Russian military aggression against Ukraine necessitates a transparent and sustainable recovery process, which gives a boost to anti-corruption reforms. Switzerland, through Basel Institute on Governance, will strengthen capacities and expertise of relevant institutions and law enforcement agencies to enhance transparency and accountability in the recovery process. In order to ensure the most efficient use of its recovery funding, Switzerland will mainstream anti-corruption approaches in its cooperation programmes in Ukraine.


NGORC

15.09.2023 - 14.09.2024

Aligned with SDC's strategic fair partnership principles and localization approaches, Switzerland aims to address existing gaps in fostering a locally-led humanitarian response and increase the outreach of protection services to a bigger number of those in need, while enhancing the quality of protection assistance provided to the most vulnerable children in Ukraine. 


Supporting the Medical Education Development in Ukraine (MED)

01.07.2023 - 30.06.2027

Ukrainian population faces major health needs due to the war and the disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. A total collapse of the healthcare systems could be avoided thanks to the commitment of the Ministry of Health and the flexible long-term support to sectoral reforms of donors such as SDC. The Medical Education project aims to further strengthen the resilience of the medical education system in a context of acute scarcity and unprecedented migration of health professionals. 


Assistance on Nuclear Safety and Security by supporting the International Atomic Energy Agency’s Expert Missions to Ukraine

01.07.2023 - 30.09.2024

Since Russia’s military aggression against Ukraine in February 2022, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA’s) Response and Assistance Network (RANET) has provided technical assistance to Ukraine. In January 2023, the IAEA addressed to its Member States, including Switzerland, crucial extra budgetary funding needs amounting to Euro 11.8 Mio for the year 2023. This funding supports the IAEA Experts Missions to Ukraine to ensure nuclear safety and security; mitigates humanitarian protection of human live and health, disaster resilience and environmental protection.


SRC: Emergency assistance to IDP - Winterization

01.08.2022 - 31.08.2024

In expectation of the winter in Ukraine, the Swiss Red Cross in collaboration with the Ukrainian Red Cross Society improve living conditions in collective centers and host community facilities, and provide durable accommodation solutions for Internal Displaced Persons through winterization measures in Ternopil and Ivano Frankivsk Oblast. 


Ukraine: Emergency Dairy Inputs

01.06.2022 - 30.09.2024

The dairy sector in Ukraine has been badly hit by recent Russian military action. Hygiene during milking is critical to ensure food safety and to avoid potential diseases, and farmers’ ability to afford these has been disrupted. To re-establish dairy farms financial viability, milking hygiene aid will be provided through a time-limited liquidity injection into the system, benefiting farmers in the recently de-occupied Oblasts of Kyiv, Sumy and Chernihiv. 


UKR: PoU War Trauma Rehabilitation

23.05.2022 - 30.09.2024

Direct consequences of war result in an increased number of trauma patients evacuated from active conflict zones in need of physical rehabilitation, mental health and psychosocial support, and access to assistive technologies. The number of patients undergoing treatment is set to multiply in the coming weeks and months. This project seeks to rapidly ramp up urgently needed post-traumatic physical rehabilitation capacities (equipment and practitioner training) at Ukrainian hospitals in selected regions.


Support to Ukraine Reform Conference 2022

16.10.2021 - 31.12.2024

Switzerland will co-host the 5th Ukraine Reform Conference in Lugano (4-5 July 2022). In addition to events held outside Ukraine, Switzerland will support an inclusive and multi-stakeholder in-country preparatory process to generate broader support for reforms and to present concrete commitments at the conference itself. For this purpose, it will organize a series of activities in Ukraine including civil society, the private sector, local authorities, academia and government institutions.

Object 1 – 12 of 38

Last update 05.10.2022

  • «We should seize the opportunity we have at presen», says the boss of the Swiss Cooperation Office in Kiev.

  • After having received a request for aid, Switzerland organised five humanitarian consignments to Ukraine between May 2015 and September 2016.

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