Biometric Passports and ID Cards - Ukraine

Having finally got around to the core issue of Stage 1 relating to the road map on Visa-free travel as per the document from the EU, the RADA has passed the necessary laws for biometric passports and identified the company that will produce them. Just how technically good the new law is remains to be […]

Nobel Peace Prize - The EU and accepting awards on behalf of others

Not really anything to do with Ukraine, other than the EU currently being its stated eventual destination, and being something of a headlining story in the main stream media, normally it is a subject I wouldn’t touch - simply because it is headlining in the main stream mdeia. However, Nobel Peace Prize justified? On balance, […]

After the elections - Is what happens to Ukraine that important to its neighbours?

Naturally there is a lot of interest in the forthcoming elections in Ukraine - particularly so by its immediate neighbours.  To be frank, there always has been since independence was dumped in the lap of Ukraine. In fact the degree of meddling, both overtly, covertly, cleverly, clumsily, diplomatically and politically, either through direct channels or […]

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 […]

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, […]

Migration, Immigration, Asylum, trafficking, readmissions and all those frameworks to deal with unwanted movement of people in and through Ukraine

This post has the potential to be something of a mish-mash.  In fact it could appear to be bolted together with the crudeness of a 1970’s Lada compared to a smooth finish of a modern day Bentley. That is the way of things sometimes. As it happens, it ties together a number of random occurrences […]

More embarrassment? Barroso, Moldova and Ukraine

Only a few days ago I wrote this and suggested that the national embarrassment of coming in second behind Moldova, a nation that is the butt of all Ukrainian jokes when it comes to stupidity, may be a useful lever in EU/Ukrainian relations. It seems other may also think it not a bad idea either. […]

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 […]

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 […]

How much meeting time can Euro 22 million buy?

On Monday 17th September, Thorbjorn Jagland, Secretary General of the Council of Europe meets with President Yanukovych and Ukraine’s Foreign Minister, Konstyantyn Gryshchenko. The meeting is to discuss the Euro 22 million donated/invested/given (take your pick) under the auspices of the Council of Europe’s “Action plan for Ukraine”.  The “action plan” is designed to assist […]