According to UNESCO, the Russian war has inflicted damage worth approximately $2.6 billion on Ukraine’s cultural and heritage sites. Furthermore, since the Russian invasion in February 2022, the combined revenue loss of culture, tourism, sports, and entertainment sectors is estimated to be $15.1 billion. About 250 monuments, primarily in the eastern part of the country, have been either partially or completely destroyed.
Notably, Ukraine has seven cultural sites and one natural site that are designated as World Heritage sites by UNESCO, including the recently added historic city centre of Odesa, which has not been significantly affected by the conflict. Additionally, sixteen other sites are on UNESCO’s tentative world heritage list, awaiting formal application by the Kyiv government to obtain World Heritage status. One such site is the centre of Chernigiv, which suffered significant damage during the early months of the conflict due to the Russian siege.
Audrey Azoulay, the Director-General of UNESCO, visited Ukraine on April 3 and stated that around $6.9 billion would be required to repair the damage and revive the affected sectors. She also pledged support to the Ukrainian authorities to develop a national reconstruction plan for the culture sector.