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European banking sector’s response to the war in Ukraine

The European banking sector stands in solidarity with Ukraine and its people, strongly condemning the Russian aggression. Almost five million people have fled their homes to countries neighbouring Ukraine since the beginning of the Russian invasion. To help them access financial services, banks across Europe have introduced simplified procedures for opening bank accounts, on some occasions offering basic accounts and payment cards free of charge. Several banks have waived transfer fees to Ukraine and Moldova to help refugees send money to their families. To help address the humanitarian crisis caused by the Russian invasion, banks have donated to charitable organizations and are continuing to raise funds to help those affected by this aggression. The sector also continued to boost awareness about risks associated with the war in Ukraine, including human trafficking and cyberscams. The industry recognises its pivotal role in ensuring the effective implementation of sanctions on Russia and is engaged in an active dialogue with EU policymakers to ensure the appropriate implementation of the restrictive measures imposed by the European authorities.

“European banks have stood firmly with Ukraine and its people from the first days of the Russian invasion. Banks have helped those fleeing to EU countries open bank accounts and have waived fees on transfers to Ukraine to help refugees and others sending money home. Banks have also contributed to the humanitarian relief efforts and will continue to do so, especially in countries that welcome those arriving from Ukraine in large numbers. Most importantly, banks in every single European country are united in implementing the whole range of sanctions against Russia and we constantly work with policymakers to ensure this is done effectively. We will continue to support Ukrainians suffering the consequences of Russia’s attack as long as it is needed.“

Ana Botín, European Banking Federation President, Executive chairman, Banco Santander SA



As Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, Romania and other countries neighbouring Ukraine welcome an unprecedented number of refugees, the European banks express their solidarity by donating funds to local NGOs providing humanitarian aid where it’s needed the most. We invite you to discover and donate to our partner organizations.


The European Banking Federation (EBF), the voice of the European banking sector, is closely monitoring and working to address regulatory and financial topics related to the ongoing war in Ukraine. 

Access to bank accounts
Human trafficking prevention
Sanction implementation
Waiving payment transfers fees
Cyber risk awareness
Exchange of Ukrainian hryvnia


Banking associations and banks are taking action to support Ukrainians fleeing the Russian aggression. Learn more and contribute to the initiatives taking place across Europe.


Find out about the latest developments and initiatives by the European institutions.

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