Free Trade Agreements - Ukraine


Turkey looks set to be the next Free Trade Agreement negotiated and signed by the current Ukrainian government - quite possibly by the end of 2012. Quite rightly too.  If there is a star economic performer in the Black Sea region over the past few years to date, it most certainly is Turkey. In all […]

Currency wars over Ukraine?

ruble yuan

Well, I was hoping to write something truly interesting from the meeting between the CIS Prime Ministers that has been held over the past few days in Yalta. Unfortunately, not much worthy of real comment has been said or done - unless you want to include the nearing ascension of Kazakhstan and then Kyrgyzstan as […]

1st November 2012 - A date for the diary - Release of Lazarenko


1st November 2012 is a date for the politics watchers diary. No, I’m not talking about the Ukrainian parliamentary elections, they take place on 28th October, and unless there is a significant shift in public opinion over the next 6 weeks, the Party of Regions/Communist alliance will continue to hold the majority. Far more uncertain, […]

On the fringes - Yalta Annual Meeting

Today is the last day of the 9th Yalta Annual Meeting where the great and the good, well a good many politicians and ex-politicians who used to hold high office, attended to talk about global issues, Europe and Ukraine.  Some of them seemingly in that order. One wonders why so many ex-policy makers attended and […]

9th Yalta Annual Meeting (YES)


Well the 9th Yalta Annual Meeting as sponsored by one of Ukraine’s most famous Oligarchy, Viktor Pinchuk, son-in-law of ex-President Kuchma, has begun. Amongst those attending are EU Commissioner Stefan Fule, Swedish FM Carl Bildt, Condi Rice ex US Secretary of State, Gordon Brown ex-Prime Minister of the UK, Newt Gingrich and William Daley and […]

Embarrassment as a motivational lever? EU Visa-free and Ukraine

Last week the EU appraised Moldova against the Visa-free road-map it was given, pretty much at the same time as Ukraine was given the same road-map. The up-shot of that appraisal?  Moldova has overtaken Ukraine and can now move from Stage 1 to Stage 2 of the said road-map.  In short it has its technical […]

An open letter to the Foreign Office - Chernobyl Children’s Visas


To the very clever people in the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, London UK. I write that opening sentence with some sincerity, despite the sarcastic tone it may convey.  I have in my many  years living in Russia and latterly Ukraine met a good number of UK Ambassadors, Charges d’Affaires and other assorted FCO staff as […]

New UK Ambassador to Ukraine takes up post tomorrow

simon-smith uk amb

A very quick post today, to welcome on board the good/sinking ship (delete as appropriate) Ukraine, Her Majesty’s Ambassador to Ukraine, Mr Simon Smith who officially starts tomorrow, Wednesday 5th September. Now don’t claim to be surprised, I told you all back in October 2011 he was coming - just in time to experience the crescendo […]

The Diplomatic Games - Moscow 4-8 October

Well, we’ve had the Eurovision, Euro 2012 football tournament, Olympics 2012, and the Paralympics 2012 begins in effect today.  That is to name just a few major sporting events in 2012. A veritable sports-fest for those inclined to either participate or go along as a spectator. But, my dear readers, with the conclusion of the […]

Tigipko - Stating the obvious!


There are a few things that all good politicians can do in any nation on earth.  The first is deftly avoid answering a question, the second is manipulating statistics in an attempt to add credence to their position, and the third is to make an address or speech without reading it and sounding like a […]