Ukraine: Current Issues and U.S. Policy [Updated August 23, 2006]   [open pdf - 68KB]

"After taking office as President, Yushchenko said that Ukraine would seek integration into the global economy and Euro-Atlantic institutions. The Ukrainian government's main foreign policy goal is to join the World Trade Organization (WTO) by the end of this year. In the longer term, Ukraine's leaders seek to join the European Union and NATO. Ukraine is seeking to retain good ties with Russia, but relations have been troubled since Yushchenko has taken power, particularly after Russia cut off natural gas supplies to Ukraine in January 2006. The supplies were quickly restored, but only after Ukraine agreed to a hefty increase in gas prices. Yanukovych's return to power may result in closer Ukrainian ties to Russia and less effective Ukrainian government support for the country's WTO membership and Euro-Atlantic integration. U.S. officials supported the 'Orange Revolution' in Ukraine in late 2004 and early 2005, warning the former regime against trying to impose fraudulent election results, and hailing Yushchenko's ultimate victory. U.S. officials have remained upbeat about Ukraine's successes in some areas, such as adopting legislation needed for WTO membership and in improving media freedom, while acknowledging difficulties in others. Administration officials have also praised Ukraine's efforts to hold a free and fair parliamentary election on March 26, 2006 and have vowed to work with the new government led by Prime Minister Yanukovych."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, RL33460
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