Germany ready to use frozen Russian assets if legal, ministry sources say

By Thomson Reuters May 22, 2024 | 10:17 AM

BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany is open to using frozen Russian assets to help Ukraine’s war effort, sources at the Finance Ministry said on Wednesday.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen will push finance ministers from the Group of Seven major democracies meeting in Italy next week to agree to a plan to bring forward the interest earnings on frozen Russian assets to provide money to Ukraine quickly, a senior U.S. Treasury official said on Friday.

“If there is a legally viable mechanism that will enable us to make even better use of these financial flows from the frozen assets in the future, then we are certainly prepared to do so,” one German source said.

G7 negotiators have been discussing for weeks how to best exploit some $300 billion worth of Russian financial assets, such as major currencies and government bonds, that were frozen shortly after Moscow invaded Ukraine in February 2022.

The Ukrainian finance minister will attend the meeting, the sources said.

(Reporting by Maria Martinez; Editing by Kevin Liffey)