The European Union and Ukraine intend to expand cooperation in the field of renewable energy and hydrogen to promote the development of the country, whose energy system has been severely affected by Russian attacks, according to a draft document obtained by Reuters.
A draft memorandum of understanding is due to be signed at a summit between Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and top EU officials in Kyiv later this week.
The document may be amended before it is approved by member governments.
The draft says the EU and Ukraine will improve regulatory, financial and environmental conditions to "significantly accelerate the deployment of renewable energy in Ukraine" and attract investment in the sector.
This month, the EU said it would supply Ukraine with 1,000 generators from a reserve located in Poland, having already offered 1,400.
The draft agreement goes beyond such emergency provisions and aims to support Ukraine in building renewable energy and developing nascent low-carbon sectors - even in the face of the ongoing war following Russia's invasion in February 2022.
The EU and Ukraine will share information on demand forecasts for hydrogen and renewable gases, such as biomethane, and synchronize ways to certify them as they try to create a non-fossil fuel gas market, the draft said.
"The aim is to provide potential investors with maximum clarity on the development of the industry and on the market for these gases," it said.
However, the draft does not specify whether cooperation will be limited to hydrogen produced from renewable electricity, which the EU wants to greatly expand to meet climate goals, or whether it will extend to other types as well.
The vast majority of hydrogen used in Europe today is produced from fossil fuels in a process that produces CO2 emissions that heat up the planet.
According to another draft document, nine countries, including France and Hungary, have asked to include other "low-carbon gases," a term that could include hydrogen produced from nuclear energy, in the agreement with Ukraine.