Building back greener and better in Ukraine

During the Russian full-scale invasion, severe damage has been caused to people, infrastructure, and the environment in Ukraine. The new Nefco Green Recovery Programme for Ukraine will support green economy and transition in the recovery process. The aim is to enhance and finance projects focused on rebuilding infrastructure at the municipal level to ensure that Ukraine is built back greener and better.

Why green recovery in Ukraine matters?

WWF Ukraine: Nature is the silent victim

The war has caused tremendous damage on the environment. Measuring and verifying the extent of the damage will be challenging as long as the war is ongoing. It is, however, clear that both the Ukrainian society and nature are in desperate need of restoration. Bohdan Vykhor CEO at WWF Ukraine, shared his view with Nefco on why urgent green recovery matters.

Why Nefco?

Extensive network with municipalities in Ukraine

During the last decade, Nefco has partnered with over a hundred Ukrainian municipalities and successfully financed and implemented environmentally sound projects in energy efficiency, district heating and other municipal services.

Best practices and knowledge sharing

Nefco collaborates with municipalities to introduce transparent procurement practices and measures to fight corruption and misconduct. Projects also offer possibility to share know-how on Nordic technologies and European standards. Procurements are done by the municipalities, and several procurements are currently ongoing.

Check our latest procurement notices

Green Recovery for Ukraine

The Nefco Green Recovery Programme for Ukraine aims to pave the way for a greener recovery for the war-damaged Ukraine. Through various initiatives, the programme will provide financial and technical assistance to municipalities to conduct repairs and rebuild in an environmentally sound way and support them in accommodating internally displaced people and designing Local Green Recovery Plans with Nordic support and competence.

Why is it needed?

During the illegal Russian invasion, severe damage has been caused to people, infrastructure and the environment in Ukraine. In addition to immediate basic humanitarian assistance, Ukraine needs significant reconstruction and financial development support over several years to overcome the destruction caused by the war. Local governments will need skills development support to be capable of planning environmentally sustainable recovery in a manner that catalyses reduced dependence on fossil fuels and cuts harmful pollution while appropriately harnessing opportunities for renewable energy, energy efficiency and modern, clean technology solutions.

The objective of the Nefco Green Recovery Programme for Ukraine is to support the green economy and transition in Ukraine’s recovery process. The aim is to enhance and finance projects focused on rebuilding infrastructure at the municipal level to ensure that Ukraine is built back greener and better. 

What makes the programme green?

The reconstruction offers Ukraine an opportunity to leapfrog technologically. The most obvious possibility is to create a carbon-free economy, both as a way to coordinate on investments for the future, but also to show how to reduce reliance on fossil fuels as much as possible. Ukraine is prepared to reform the country, to focus on a green, circular economy, get rid of fossil fuel dependence and take European standards into use.

The programme will be fully aligned with the 1.5 degree-objective of the Paris Agreement. The recovery will be geared toward a green transition and transformation of economy and society, supporting cities to be rebuilt based on environmental assessment and impact, using modern solutions.

Activities will be subject to Nefco’s rules and policies, including Nefco’s Environmental and Sustainability Policy and Guidelines and requirements under the EU Pillar Assessment. To catalyse further sustainability impacts, municipalities will be able to receive technical support in developing environmental needs assessments.

How will the programme work?

The Nefco Green Recovery Programme for Ukraine aims to work long term towards a green recovery in Ukraine together with Nordic, European and multinational contributors and institutions. Nefco works directly with municipalities and help them to plan and finance sustainable recovery from the damage caused by the Russian military invasion of Ukraine. Municipalities are playing a significant role in building Ukraine back greener and better.

The programme may comprise individual initiatives from various contributors. Contributions for existing facilities and initiatives managed by Nefco can be repurposed towards the new programme given the urgent need for recovery and supplemented by new initiatives and contributions. The programme will be available on an ongoing basis and provide financial and technical assistance to municipalities for various repair and rebuilding projects to be executed in an environmentally sound way and support them in designing Local Green Recovery Plans.

The programme was launched in July 2022 and project preparations and implementations have already begun. The EU, Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden are the programme’s initial contributors.

How Nefco works in Ukraine

In 2009, Nefco and Ukraine signed a framework agreement that provides a legal framework for Nefco’s operations in Ukraine. The framework agreement, which came into effect in 2010, grants Nefco certain privileges and immunities in Ukraine and enables Nefco to provide financing to municipalities and carry out projects in an efficient way. This supports the country in its transition to a green economy and benefits the communities and ordinary people in Ukraine.

For more information on our processes for financing projects in Ukraine and the role of involved parties read more about How Nefco works in Ukraine.
The information is also available in Ukrainian Як НЕФКО працює в Україні.

“The level of critical infrastructure damage caused by the military invasion is tremendous. There is an urgent need for support to small and medium-sized municipalities for rebuilding Ukraine. We believe Nefco has the necessary experience in reconstruction and modernisation and greatly appreciate its help.”

Mr Oleksiy Chernyshov, Minister for Communities and Territorial Development of Ukraine.

Related news stories

Read more about our recent activities related to the Green Recovery Programme for Ukraine:

24 February 2023: Rebuilding Ukraine – interview with Pasi Rinne, Senior Strategic Advisor to Nefco

16 February 2023: Denmark is supporting critical heating infrastructure in Ukraine through Nefco

23 December 2022: Finland provides EUR 5 million for green reconstruction in Ukraine

15 December 2022: The EU provides EUR 50 million to repair critical infrastructure as part of Nefco’s green recovery activities in Ukraine

11 November 2022: Green reconstruction in Ukraine: Collaboration, capacity building and transparency on all levels highlighted at Nefco’s Finance Day event at COP27

8 September 2022: Ukrainian Ministry and Nefco to cooperate on a green recovery

1 July 2022: Ukraine to be built back greener with new programme

What we have achieved in Ukraine before the invasion


projects financed and implemented in Ukraine


public buildings renovated for improved energy-efficiency


children and staff benefitting


reductions in CO2 emissions after energy-efficiency projects

Examples of financed projects in Ukraine


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