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The European Union (EU) Council has agreed to provide additional €1bn assistance to facilitate the procurement of ammunition and missiles for the Ukrainian military forces.

This measure has been adopted as part of the European Peace Facility (EPF).

The allocated funds will be utilised to finance the joint procurement of 155mm calibre artillery rounds, if requested, and missiles by the EU member nations.

The member states will procure ammunition and missiles from the EU or Norway-based ‘economic operators’.

Production of associated defence articles will also take place in EU or Norway.

However, the operators’ supply chains may comprise of companies that are either established outside EU or Norway or have production facilities located in non-EU or Norway regions.

Besides, the assistance measure includes provision for deliveries of ammunition and missiles that have completed an important manufacturing phase in EU or Norway, including final assembly.

EU Foreign Affairs and Security Policy High Representative Josep Borrell said: “The Ukrainian Armed Forces need substantial amounts of ammunition to defend the Ukrainian people and territory. They need it fast.

“Together with the previous decision to swiftly provide ammunition from existing stocks, we are committing €2bn to this purpose, bringing the total EU military support to Ukraine to €5.6bn.”

The initial discussions to deliver ammunition support to Ukraine was undertaken by the member states during an informal meeting on 9 March.

Later, the EU Council accepted the proposal on 20 March and decided to implement it via a three-track approach to ensure rapid procurement and delivery of ammunition for Ukraine, within the next 12 months.

The latest move marks the implementation of second track under this joint procurement approach.

The effort is expected to enhance the Ukrainian forces’ capabilities to counter a wide range of adversaries resulting from Russian military forces’ ongoing aggression.

It will help the Ukrainian troops to safeguard their territorial integrity as well as civilian population and infrastructure.