Yellen says US to aid Ukraine for ‘as long as it takes’

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen signaled the Biden administration is prepared to continue seeking billions of dollars in aid for Ukraine as the Eastern European country battles Russia’s invasion and missile attacks.

The US has promised $38 billion in military aid and delivered $13 billion in direct aid to Ukraine already.

Asked in an interview on CBS’s “60 Minutes” how long that level of support can carry on, Yellen responded, “As long as it takes,” according to a transcript provided by the broadcaster.

The Treasury chief’s remarks echo that of President Joe Biden, who on Sunday affirmed US support for Ukraine in a call with President Volodymyr Zelenskiy. Biden said the US is committed to continue providing Ukraine with security, economic and humanitarian assistance, as well as holding Russia accountable for the war, according to a readout from White House.

Yellen also gave a qualified thumbs-up on a new effort by the US and its allies — launched December 5 — to limit Russia’s revenue from oil exports. The Group of Seven countries and the European Union put a cap on what Russia can charge for oil exports and still get access to crucial shipping services provided by EU and UK companies.

“The price cap only went into effect at the beginning of this week, but I would say, so far, so good,” Yellen said.

CBS also spoke to Yellen’s deputy, Wally Adeyemo, who cited the damage that sanctions have inflicted on Russia’s economy.

He hinted at how much intelligence the Biden administration has on Russian government activities.

“We’re able to view intelligence on Russia’s attempts to evade our sanctions,” Adeyemo said. “We also see intelligence about what Russia needs to continue its war in Ukraine.”

© 2022 Bloomberg

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