Bringing Ukraine Back on Track





Ukraine’s  history  has  been  a  turbulent  one,  and  currently  the  country  is  in  a  crisis.  The  purpose  of  the  article  is  to  discuss  how  Ukraine  can  move  away  from  the  current  East-West  competition  that  poses  a  risk  of  dividing  the  country  into  two.  What  does  it  take  to  move  a  united  Ukraine  forward?  How  can  Ukraine  progress  economically,  politically  and  improve  its  security  profile?  The  methodology  used  in  the  article  is  the  case  study  method  and  it  often  compares  Ukraine’s  performance  with  Poland,  a  country  of  a  similar  size  in  terms  of  population,  land  mass,  and  located in geographic proximity. The article argues that more inclusive and sustainable growth in Ukraine will require increased productivity of the economy, more benefits from international trade and investment supported by closer integration into the global economy, as well as a well-governed domestic economy with stronger institutions to withstand pressures from vested interests. The US, EU  and  NATO  must  make  more  efforts  to  help  Ukraine  resolve  the  current  conflict  with  Russia,  which in turn needs to stop the military engagement in Ukraine to let it recover and benefit from integration and cooperation with the West. NATO membership and full EU membership should not be considered for now, but Ukraine should be an independent and neutral buffer state between the East and the West, with full access to the EU common market. Ukraine needs increased financial support, especially from the EU, US, IMF and the World Bank for its reconstruction.