Ukraine is the country with the largest reserves of uranium in Europe. It is the country on the continent with the most arable land. And leadership Export World sunflower and sunflower oil. It is the third largest iron producer in the world. But its natural resources, its Possible AgricultureThey are not the ones who started the war there.
Ukraine is considered one of the poorest countries in Europe. Much of this situation has been explained by military conflict. What was released last Wednesday does not support the same.
Since 2014, there has been a serious armed conflict between the Ukrainian army and the rebels Donetsk and Luhansk, In eastern Ukraine. The conflict has already killed at least 14,000.
The two provinces – which together form the Donbass region – have been recognized by Russia as independent and, say, militarily support the end of the war.
Since the conflict began in 1971 Donbass, Ukraine’s economy collapsed and GDP fell by about 7%. “In 2015, it dropped by about 10% and inflation was over 40%. Ukraine has shown signs of recovery in recent years, but remains one of the poorest countries in Europe, “said El Periodico, a Spanish newspaper.
This is explained by the fact that Russia was the main Partner Business From UkraineA country where it sold cereals and metals and from where it got them, mainly gas, keys, among other things, To heat In countries with strong winters.
However, with the war this kind of exchange stopped. And market change has not been so easy or profitable for the population.
Prior to 2014, Ukraine tried to sign a Agreement Trade with the European Union, To rely less on Russia. But under pressure, such an agreement is closed Vladimir Petni And the battle at Donbass which began immediately.
The war in Donbass has a lot to do with the fact that the economic and political landscape in Ukraine is not the same. The western part of the country, which is Ukrainian-speaking, prefers an economy Free Market. The Russian-speaker prefers a more centrally planned economy, as he experienced in his prosperous years as a member of the USSR, when Ukraine was known as Russia’s bread basket.
A memory that goes back to the years before 1991 for the Ukrainians, the year it became independent from the Soviet Union, which had already dissolved.
When Ukraine became an independent republic, it was expected to be a transition to a free market, as other neighbors were doing, for example, Czech Republic, Latvia or Lithuania.
But he failed in his attempt. The passage of a state-owned company into private hands is a key aspect of leaving Communism, In the midst of corrupt practices that benefit Ukraine’s oligarchic sectors. That’s what left him Competition And disrupted their economic development.
In the 2021 report, Transparency International ranked Ukraine 122nd out of 180 countries. El Periodico explains that this represents an improvement over 2014 (142), but it lags far behind its European neighbors.
The result is that 85% of Ukraine’s resources have been lost Sector oligarchsAccording to the Spanish portal VisualPolitik, thanks to successful initiatives, not political gain. Only 25 landowners have cultivable land. There is no competition that boosts the economy. Despite having highly fertile land, 70% of the land produces half per hectare that is produced in the United States.
Moreover, as a holdover of its Soviet past, Ukraine still has 3,600 state-owned companies.
The country has about 41 million inhabitants, but an estimated 10 million Ukrainians work abroad during the season, especially in construction and sending money home to relatives. Thus, about 12% of GDP comes from these remittances.
War and corruption have hampered Ukraine’s progress.
So why Russian interests?
Ukraine has high geopolitical value for Russia. By controlling it militarily or politically, Vladimir Putin’s government could prevent the nation from joining the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.NATO), Which began in 1991 and continued to grow eastward towards the Russian border until it had 30 members. Some of them, like Ukraine, were part of the USSR until 1991.
If Ukraine becomes part of NATO (something it wants, although it is unlikely to do so soon), Russia believes it could become a military enclave. West. You are afraid of the risk of attack.
Currently, Ukraine is not part of the European Union or NATO. However, it received substantial military and financial support from Europe Condition JoinedAlthough not at the level that would make it a military rival to Russia.
Putin further argued that if Ukraine joins NATO, the alliance could try to retake Crimea, the peninsula that Russia annexed in 2014, the BBC explained in London.
An article in the New York Times noted that “the removal of Russian influence in Ukraine felt like the final nail in the coffin of Russian power in Eastern Europe.”
Moreover, for Europe and the United States, “Ukraine is important in part because they see it as an indicator of their own influence and Russia’s intentions in the rest of Europe.”