New Zealand to provide further support for Ukraine

Prime Minister

New Zealand is providing further targeted support for Ukraine’s recovery and resilience, Prime Minister Chris Hipkins has announced.  

The Prime Minister and President Volodymyr Zelenskyy met today on the side-lines of the NATO Leaders’ summit in Vilnius, Lithuania. The two Leaders discussed New Zealand’s unwavering support for Ukraine and its unequivocal condemnation of Russia’s ongoing aggression.

“We strongly support the underlying objective that Ukraine should determine its own future within its internationally-recognised borders,” Chris Hipkins said.

“New Zealand is providing $1.2 million to the United Nations Development Programme’s Mine Action Programme which has been the UN lead on eliminating the threat posed by land mines in Ukraine since 2016. This contribution responds to Ukraine’s Ten Point Peace Formula’s call for work to ‘prevent ecocide’, particularly through investing in de-mining.

“A contribution will also be made to the maintenance of nuclear safety and security, another key pillar of the Peace Formula, with $500,000 going to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) for its work in Ukraine.

“New Zealand remains strongly opposed to any use of nuclear weapons.

“The devastation wrought by the destruction of the Kakhovka Dam, which provided cooling water for the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, has underscored once again the vital importance of the IAEA’s work there to reduce the risk of a nuclear incident.  New Zealand calls on Russia to end its occupation and militarisation of the nuclear power plant.

“We have also committed a further $3 million in recovery and reconstruction assistance for Ukraine. How that is best used to support peace efforts will be developed in consultation with international partners,” Chris Hipkins said.

During the past 16 months, New Zealand has responded to Russia’s aggression against Ukraine through a package of diplomatic, military and humanitarian assistance worth more than $80 million, as well as our support for Ukraine’s legal case against Russia, sanctions targeting more than 1500 Russian and Belarusian individuals and entities, and the implementation of restrictive trade measures.

“We maintain our resolve to sanction those with a material or strategic role in the conflict. New Zealand plans to implement further sanctions against Russian and Belarusian individuals and entities next week,” Chris Hipkins said. 

“These sanctions will target military and economic actors and sectors supporting the continuation of this abhorrent war, as well as avenues being used for sanctions evasion. This supports the broader efforts of our international partners, and makes it harder for Russia to continue to wage war.

“Today’s announcements demonstrate our unwavering solidarity with the people of Ukraine, and our ongoing willingness to contribute meaningfully in areas of importance to Ukraine,” Chris Hipkins said.

Notes to editors:

More information about diplomatic, military, legal, and humanitarian support to Ukraine, as well as sanctions, travel bans and export controls against Russia, can be found on the MFAT site here.

The Government has announced the following actions in response to the war in Ukraine:

  • Banned exports to Russian and Belarusian military and security forces. 
  • Passed the historic Russia Sanctions Act under which we have passed sanctions targeting:
    • Vladimir Putin and key members of his inner circle.
    • Senior leadership of the Security Council of the Russian Federation.
    • All 620 members of the Russian parliament (State Duma and Federation Council).
    • All Russian Ministers and Governors.
    • More than 340 entities including state-owned enterprises, entities that are part of Russia’s military industrial complex, Donbas militia groups, Belarusian defence entities.
    • More than 100 oligarchs and close family with close ties and influence with the Russian Government.
    • 19 financial institutions, including Russia’s Central Bank.
    • 37 individuals and entities involved in disinformation and cyber-attacks on Ukraine.
    • 35 Belarusian leaders.
    • Almost 100 Russian-directed leaders in the Donetsk and Luhansk Peoples’ Republics and occupied Ukrainian regions.
    • The Commissioner for Children’s Rights in the Office of the President of the Russian Federation.
    • 11 Iranian individuals and seven Iranian entities for supplying drones to Russia.
  • Banned all Russian and Belarusian Government and military aircraft and vessels from New Zealand.
  • Suspended bilateral Foreign Ministry Consultations with Russia

Trade measures

  • Implemented a 35 percent tariff on all Russian imports to New Zealand (this was due to expire in November but has been extended to 2025 to align with other sanctions).
  • Banned the import of Russian gold into New Zealand.
  • Significantly expanded the export ban on Russia and Belarus to cover more industrial products of strategic importance (by adding more than 700 new prohibited tariff lines).
  • Banned the import of Russian oil, gas, and coal.
  • Banned the export of oil exploration and oil production goods to Russia.
  • Banned the import from and export to Russia of certain luxury goods.

Other assistance to Ukraine

  • Provided direct support to Ukraine’s self-defence with:
    • $11.35m of non-lethal military assistance to support Ukraine via the NATO Trust Fund and communications equipment procured from TAIT.
    • $7.5m to contribute to weapons and ammunition procurement by the United Kingdom.
    • $4.1m to support commercial satellite access for the Ukrainian Defence Intelligence.
    • Surplus NZDF equipment also sent to Ukraine. 1066 x Body Armour Plates, 473 x Helmets, 571 x Camouflage Vests/Harness Webbing.
    • Deployment of defence force personnel to the United Kingdom, Belgium and Germany, to support our Ukraine through in training, intelligence, liaison, and logistics activities.
  • Provided $14.93m in humanitarian assistance for both refugees and those still inside Ukraine.
  • Provided $2.615m to the International Criminal Court (ICC) to support the ICC’s investigation into war crimes and crimes against humanity in Ukraine, with funding for the Office of the Prosecutor and the Trust Fund for Victims.
  • Secondment of a senior NZDF military officer to support the ICC investigation
  • Provided $1m to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.
  • Provided $1.2m to the UN Development Programme’s Mine Action Programme in Ukraine.
  • Provided $500,000 to the International Atomic Energy Agency for its work promoting nuclear safety, security and safeguards in Ukraine.
  • Intervened as a third party in support of Ukraine’s International Court of Justice case against Russia.
  • Established a special Ukraine visa for family members of Ukrainian New Zealanders plus other visa changes.
  • Made a $3m provision for future recovery/reconstruction assistance in Ukraine.

Ukraine Special Visa Policy numbers as of 7 June

  • 1132 Expressions of Interest in sponsoring received (of which 1116 processed)
  • 900 Invitations to Apply for Visas sent (includes 95 cancelled and 97 declined)
  • 1601 visa applications received
  • 1474 visas approved (1264 work visas and 210 student visas)

667 people granted Special Visas have arrived in New Zealand.