>@Romand Baluk
© Romand Baluk
  • The city was able to purchase the trams thanks to a sustainable urban public transport project in Ukraine facilitated by a €200 million EIB loan.
  • The new tram fleet is a much-needed infrastructure upgrade as Lviv accommodates more than 100 000 people displaced by the ongoing war.
  • The EIB has provided a total of €2 billion to Ukraine since the war began.

Today, the western Ukrainian city of Lviv marked the completion of a project to enhance urban mobility involving the purchase of ten low-floor trams. The trams and related equipment and services were financed by a €17.4 million loan from the European Investment Bank (EIB), an opportunity made possible by Lviv’s participation in the broader Ukraine Urban Public Transport project.

This project is also updating public transport fleets in Kyiv, Kharkiv, Ternopil, Lutsk, Sumy, Zaporizhzhia, Odesa, Mykolaiv and Ivano-Frankivsk. It is funded by a €200 million loan from the EIB, supplemented by €3.5 million in technical assistance from the European Union.

The new five-section, low-floor trams now serve a route linking the large residential area of Sykhiv with Lviv city centre. Featuring wide doors and seats designed for wheelchair users, these trams respond to the increasing need for inclusive transportation in Ukraine. This need has become even more critical due to the ongoing war, which has significantly raised the number of people with disabilities resulting from military action like shelling and bombing.

Oleksandr Kubrakov, Deputy Prime Minister for Restoration of Ukraine and Minister for Communities, Territories and Infrastructure Development, said, “Quality public transport is one of the key demands for change among the residents of Ukrainian cities. We are grateful that, despite the war, our European partners continue to support the development of urban public transport, bringing it closer to European standards. Lviv and other cities participating in the Ukraine Urban Public Transport project demonstrate remarkable resilience in delivering, be it transport upgrades or reconstruction of damage, and in improving life for residents despite the challenges.”

Lviv Mayor Andriy Sadovyi explained, “Today marks the final completion step — all 10 trams are now operating on the route. It’s very important to showcase this example during the war. Cooperation with the European Investment Bank is a uniquely positive experience. Many communities are watching this case because every city would like to have such cooperation. So, a big thank you to the Bank and everyone involved in this project. This support is especially crucial during the war.”

Jean-Erik de Zagon, Head of the EIB Regional Hub for Eastern Europe, said, “Despite the challenges posed by Russia’s war in Ukraine, Lviv has demonstrated remarkable resilience by completing this project, providing access to ten comfortable, inclusive and eco-friendly trams manufactured locally. The EIB remains committed to supporting Ukrainian cities with transport, road, energy and other municipal projects, contributing to the country’s sustainable reconstruction and development.”

Henrik Huitfeldt, Head of the Local and Human Development Section at the EU Delegation to Ukraine, remarked, “I congratulate Lviv on the timely completion of the production and delivery of ten trams. The city’s residents and visitors can now enjoy a new, inclusive and eco-friendly means of public transportation. Together with the EIB, we will continue to stand with Ukraine, helping it restore and improve vital urban services and foster economic stability.”

Volodymyr Kovaliv, acting Director of the Lviv municipal enterprise Lvivelectrotrans, stated, “We enhanced our fleet for the benefit of our passengers. Providing convenient and environmentally friendly transport remains our top priority, even amid this war. Furthermore, this project has not only allowed us to create jobs and support Ukrainian manufacturing with the trams produced by Electron, but it has also helped support the broader Ukrainian economy. Recently, we launched a new tender inviting Ukrainian companies to help us with the overhaul and modernisation of tram cars — an initiative that is also backed by the EIB.”

Improving urban public transport in Ukraine amid the war 

The Ukraine Urban Public Transport project is managed by Ukraine’s Ministry for Communities, Territories and Infrastructure Development, in conjunction with its Ministry of Finance. This €200 million investment from the EIB gives city councils and municipal transport companies the resources they need to equip Ukrainian cities with modern means of urban public transport like buses, trolleybuses and trams. 

With the additional technical assistance from the European Union, the country’s infrastructure ministry and participating cities like Lviv receive guidance in project preparation, implementation and adopting European standards of sustainable urban mobility.

Background information 

Present in Ukraine since 2007, the EIB has been unwavering in its support for the country’s EU integration, which has become even more vital since Russia’s full-scale invasion. With a portfolio of signed projects valued at €7.3 billion, the Bank has invested in municipal infrastructure, energy, transport and small businesses, all with the goal of improving daily life, boosting economic growth and lending support for Ukraine’s resilience and reconstruction. Since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in 2022, the EIB has provided swift relief, disbursing €2 billion of financing for emergency repairs to the country’s ravaged infrastructure.

Through its EU4U Fund and the broader EU for Ukraine initiative, coupled with its key role in implementing the European Union’s €50 billion Ukraine Facility, the EIB remains committed to stepping up its activities in line with the mandate given by EU leaders and in close cooperation with the European Commission, the European Parliament, EU Member States and international partners.