Poland seeks EUR 2.2 billion from EU in refugee aid

Błażej Poboży told public television channel TVP Info on Wednesday that Poland is helping Ukrainians now and the EU should not delay assisting the country with refugee funding. Rafał Guz/PAP

Poland would like EUR 2.2 billion from the European Union to cover the cost of sheltering and caring for each Ukrainian refugee, a deputy interior minister has said.

Błażej Poboży told public television channel TVP Info on Wednesday that Poland is helping Ukrainians now and the EU should not delay assisting the country with refugee funding.

"It is important for the money to be easy to spend, namely with no acquisition and settlement procedures tied to it," Poboży said.

The Polish and German interior ministers, Mariusz Kamiński and Nancy Faeser, have appealed to the European Commission for EUR 1,000 for every Ukrainian refugee accepted by a host country.

Nearly 2.4 million Ukrainian refugees have crossed the Polish border since the war with Russia started on February 24, but it is not clear how many have continued their journey to other countries.

But Poboży said that "it is easy to calculate that we would like to obtain EUR 2.2 billion."

Poland has been issuing PESEL national identification numbers to Ukrainian refugees to help them use the country's healthcare and education systems, and to facilitate access to the labour market.

So far, close to half a million refugees have been assigned a PESEL, with 96 percent of them being women and children, the deputy minister said.