Empowering Resilience: UNDP and Japan provide Ukrainian communities with 572 generators for emergency power supply

June 30, 2023

In the photo from left to right: Kuninori Matsuda, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to Ukraine, Anna Yurchenko, Deputy Minister of Development of Communities, Territories and Infrastructure of Ukraine for European Integration, Jaco Cilliers, UNDP Resident Representative to Ukraine,

Photo: Kseniya Navenchenko / UNDP in Ukraine

Kyiv, 30 June 2023 – Today, the United Nations Development Programme and the Government of Japan unveiled the latest result of their pivotal collaboration, delivering 572 emergency generators to Kherson, Dnipropetrovsk, and Zaporizhzhia Oblasts in Ukraine. These generators, ranging in capacity from 3 to 20 kVA, will bolster local emergency rescue services and ensure the stable operation of utility companies and local self-government bodies. 

Ensuring the continuous operation of vital services in Ukraine is of the highest importance as the country’s energy system remains extremely vulnerable and operates in emergency mode. The recent destruction of the Kakhovka Hydroelectric Dam affected more than 200 distribution power substations, increasing the burden on energy and water supply systems across the country. The aftermath of this destruction, combined with ongoing electricity shortages and rocket attacks on infrastructure, is obstructing restoration efforts and putting local communities at risk, underscoring the vital importance of maintaining operational services across the country. Furthermore, the Kakhovka dam destruction has aggravated the already critical situation of mine contamination in the country. UNDP launched its efforts for mine risk education for 20,000 people who are exposed to the risks of the mines carried by the flood water. 

Jaco Cilliers, UNDP Resident Representative to Ukraine, said the dam breach also unearthed thousands of landmines that are now flowing downstream and putting entire communities at risk, necessitating the need for emergencies to be on high alert and operating at optimal effeciency. "Amid a severe humanitarian crisis and the heightened threat from mine contamination, UNDP's commitment to the people of Ukraine has never been more resolute," he said. "This represents more than a mission for us; it is our solemn promise to prioritize the safety and well-being of the Ukrainian people above all else."

Speaking at the handover ceremony, Kuninori Matsuda, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to Ukraine, reiterated Japan’s unwavering support for Ukraine, and in particular people in Kherson region, who suffered from the Kakhovka Dam collapse. “Today, handing over 430 generators, we do hope that they will help facilitate risky operations, which are deeply needed by the people and communities of the Kherson region,” he said. “To make sure that people do not suffer from the floating mines and unexploded ordinances, we also asked UNDP to distribute leaflets about mine risks,” he added.

Anna Yurchenko, Deputy Minister of Development of Communities, Territories and Infrastructure of Ukraine for European Integration, thanked UNDP and Japan for their critically needed and quick assistance. "We will immediately take the generators provided by our partners to the communities, so that they can quickly resume the provision of basic services to their residents. The sooner we do it, the sooner conditions will be ensured for Ukrainians to return to their homes. We continue to work with UNDP to provide regions with generators and understand that the autumn and winter period and Russia's probable energy missile terror will soon be upon us, so the need for generators will only grow,” she said.

Petrov Stanislav, Deputy Head of Kherson Oblast Military Administration, said the generators could not have come at a better time, as local communities struggle to cope with increasing challenges from the destruction of the Kakhovka Hydroelectric Dam. “As we grapple with the fallout from the devastating destruction of the Kakhovka Hydroelectric Dam, the arrival of these generators represents a timely beacon of hope for our embattled communities," he said. "The generators are far more than just a utility; they are symbols of shared strength and collective resolve."

Yury Malashko, Head of the Zaporizhia Regional Military Administration said the generators will provide invaluable assistance for the frontline territories as shelling continues. “These genrators will help restore the functioning of all vital sectors,” he said. “Therefore, I would like to thank our international partners and friends of the Zaporizhia region for understanding the situation and supporting us. This is a significant contribution to the fight for a peaceful future of the Ukrainian Zaporizhia region".

Background: The delivery of the 572 generators is another in a series of similar support initiatives. In April, Japan and UNDP provided 77 powerful generators to support critical infrastructure facilities across the country. Last week, 142 generators with a capacity of 3 to 20 kVA were provided to communities in the Dnipropetrovsk and Zaporizhzhia oblasts.

Media enquiries: Yuliia Samus, Communications Team Leader, UNDP in Ukraine; e-mail: yuliia.samus@undp.org