Canada to contribute $5B toward Ukraine loan, source says as G7 leaders meet in Italy

SAVELLETRI DI FASANO — Canada is prepared to contribute $5 billion toward a loan to Ukraine that will be based on future revenue from frozen Russian assets, a senior government source confirmed on Thursday.

The source, who is not being named because they are not authorized to discuss details publicly, says G7 leaders are finalizing details of the loan.

Leaders of the G7 countries have agreed to engineer a US$50-billion loan to help Ukraine in its fight against Russia that would use interest earned on profits from Russia’s frozen central bank assets as collateral.

The news comes on the first day of the G7 leaders' summit taking place in Apulia, Italy.

The three-day summit is an opportunity for collaboration among the leaders of the wealthy democracies — France, Italy, Germany, the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada and Japan.

Canada has been heavily involved in the U.S.-led push to use the frozen central bank assets to help Ukraine.

The G7 announced it was freezing Russian central bank assets in 2022, shortly after Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

A government source not authorized to discuss matters publicly says Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland was making calls last month to her G7 counterparts to drum up support for an agreement to use the assets to deliver more financial help to Ukraine.

As the first day of the summit kicks off, Prime Minister Trudeau is scheduled to have meetings with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, French President Emmanuel Macron and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

He is also set to participate in working sessions with other leaders on collaboration with Africa, climate change, the Middle East and Ukraine.

Trudeau is headed to Switzerland on Saturday to attend a summit on Ukraine, where a larger group of countries will meet to discuss a future path to peace.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 13, 2024.

— With files from The Associated Press.

Nojoud Al Mallees, The Canadian Press