Rabobank: deeply shocked by war; employees in action for Ukrainians

The terror affecting the Ukrainian people has deeply shocked the employees, customers and members of Rabobank. “To see a child fleeing Russian shells, leaving the warm memories of home for an unknown destination: it is heart-breaking. This war is a stain on our history,” says Managing Board chair Wiebe Draijer. “We see the images of refugees, we see the upheaval, and we feel powerless. Our thoughts are with the victims of this barbaric violence, their families and the Ukrainian people.”

This invasion is horrific. We hope that government leaders will find a way to end the violence and bring stability back to Europe on all fronts. It is heartening to see that countless initiatives have been launched around the world to provide humanitarian aid to Ukraine. We cannot and do not want to stand back and watch. From the start, our local banks and colleagues have been actively involved in relief efforts launched in their local networks.

In this crisis, Rabobank’s position in local communities is the basis for our support for Ukrainians and Ukraine: in the Netherlands we support local initiatives with our knowledge, networks and with extra cooperative dividend.

  • To reinforce this, our employees are given the space and time to spend on these initiatives.
  • Rabobank offers various locations to shelter Ukrainian refugees: eight buildings, spread throughout the Netherlands. The first location in Roelofarendsveen is already in full use.
  • We see and hear that customers in the Netherlands want to support their loved ones in Ukraine by sending them money, so we are not charging any fees for transactions to Ukraine by private individuals for the time being.
  • We will increase the cooperative dividend this year in order to be able to support local initiatives in the Netherlands.
  • For Ukrainian refugees, we will offer an online onboarding process for opening a bank account, in order to enable them to participate in the payment system in a simple and responsible way.

In the coming days and weeks, we will of course continue to look at how we can provide aid in this dire humanitarian crisis.

Rabobank and its subsidiary DLL have started to wind down all activities in Russia and leave the country. The bank does not want to engage business in a country with a regime that brutally invades another sovereign nation. Rabobank had relatively few commercial interests in Russia, with an aggregated direct net exposure to Russia amounting to ~EUR 400 million in January 2022, which amount has since then been further reduced to ~EUR 300 million (March 2022). It is mainly Rabobank’s subsidiary DLL that is active in the country, with the leasing of machinery in the agricultural sector. New activities had already been discontinued by DLL since February 25, 2022.

Naturally, Rabobank will implement sanctions and is ready to process additional measures as they are announced. The bank is in close consultation with the supervisory authorities and other authorities.