João Gomes Cravinho (far left) in Brussels at meeting of European defence ministers

Portugal to contribute €8-10 million towards EU’s arms package to Ukraine

Portugal’s contribution to the European package to supply weapons to the Ukrainian army will be around “€8-10 million”, Defence Minister João Gomes Cravinho has confirmed.

Speaking to the Lusa news agency, after having participated by videoconference in the meeting that brought together EU defence ministers on Monday, João Gomes Cravinho said Portugal’s contribution will be made through the country’s share of the European Peace Facility, “which has already determined a support of €450 million.”

Asked about the Portuguese contribution, Gomes Cravinho specified that  “it will be between €8-10 million”, but only a few weeks from now will there be “an exact figure”.

On Sunday, foreign ministers of the 27 gave their backing to a €450 million package to fund the supply of weapons to the Ukrainian army fighting the Russian invasion – a decision that marked a historic turning point in the EU which has never before purchased arms in this way.

In addition to financial support for this European mechanism, Portugal will also be sending  military equipment to Ukraine at the request of the Ukrainian authorities (click here).

As for the 174 Portuguese soldiers being dispatched to Romania under NATO, Gomes Cravinho said a first group is leaving today to prepare for the reception of the contingent, which is being prepared – a phase that “naturally will take several weeks”.

“Several soldiers are leaving today for Romania and will work with the Romanian military authorities in preparing the reception on that side. The necessary work is underway on our side here in Portugal for the preparation of the deployment and, therefore, within a few weeks, it will be projected,” he said.