US Taxpayer Dollars are Subsidizing Small Businesses in Ukraine

US aid to Ukraine also funds government services and salaries

A report from 60 Minutes that aired Sunday detailed how US taxpayer dollars are not only funding weapons in Ukraine but are also subsidizing small businesses and paying first responders salaries, among other things.

While the bulk of US support for Ukraine has gone toward military aid, the US has also provided tens of billions of dollars in a form of assistance known as direct budgetary aid.

According to the US Agency for International Development (USAID), budgetary aid “keeps basic government services like hospitals, schools, and utilities running, and it sustains support for emergency responders and firefighters.” According to the 60 Minutes report, the US aid pays for the salaries of all 57,000 of Ukraine’s first responders.

Tatiana Abramova, a woman who runs a knitwear business in Ukraine, spoke with 60 Minutes and said she received subsidies funded by the US taxpayer. “We realize that it’s the aid from government, but it’s the aid from the heart of every ordinary American person,” Abramova said.

US officials working for USAID helped Abramova’s business find new customers overseas. Other examples of non-military aid include the US purchasing seeds and fertilizers for Ukrainian farmers. The 60 Minutes report said the US has pumped $25 billion in non-military aid into Ukraine.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.