Ukrainian interest. Sargsyan's fall, PACE dialectics and foreign ministries' positioning
Serzh Sargsyan resigned as Prime Minister of Armenia, which did not stop the political crisis in the country. Alexander Lukashenko delivered an annual address to the nation. Emmanuel Macron and Angela Merkel each had meetings with Donald Trump. PACE failed to pin down it members with alleged corruption trace behind them, but also chose not to go for rapprochement with Russia. The European Commission announced measures to combat fake news. Johannes Hahn made a tempting offer to Ukraine. The two Koreas held a summit in an idyllic atmosphere. G7 and NATO foreign ministers (with the exception of Hungary) showed support for Ukraine.
Week's balance: Roundwood timber in exchange for EU aid, slowdown in industrial output, and billions on road safety
To get a billion euros from the European Union, Ukraine will have to meet a number of useful requirements, in particular, to introduce an automatic verification of those astonishing "riches" declared by the country's officials. Meanwhile, the State Statistics Service released data on the slowdown of industrial output, and the Cabinet adopted a large-scale state program to improve road safety and ordered that the Ukrzaliznytsia [Ukrainian Railways] top managers ride trains - these are the main economic news of the outgoing week.
Ukrainian interest. Unrest in Yerevan, escalation by MFA Russia, and Kim's curtsey
The prospect of longtime Armenian president Serzh Sargsyan becoming PM sparked riots in Yerevan. Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron met in Berlin. The Russian Foreign Ministry produced more absurd statements. Early presidential and parliamentary elections were appointed in Turkey. Kim Jong-un announced halt to North Korea's nuclear tests.
Week's balance: UAH 30 per dollar, burden of minimum wage rise, and energy regulator's staffing issue
The government set Ukraine's budget policy for 2019-2021, predicting a fall of the national currency down to UAH 31.8 per dollar; the IMF issued an outlook for the country's economic development; the finance ministry came out with an unexpected confession that raising minimum wage is impossible, while Prime Minister Groysman named Ukraine's main economic problem - these are the main economic news of the outgoing week.
Head of NATO Military Committee General Petr Pavel: We are heading to make Ukrainian defense forces capable and credible enough to deter any potential aggression
Chairman of the NATO Military Committee General Petr Pavel sat down with UNIAN to explain whether it's possible to bring Ukrainian forces to NATO standards by 2020, be granted a Membership Action Plan, whether to expect from Russia a full-scale invasion into Ukraine in the short term, and why he believes the Donbas conflict has no military solution to it.
Ukrainian interest. Syria escalation, Poroshenko's efforts, and Orban's triumph
The United States, UK, and France went for a joint airstrike at Syrian facilities where the intelligence believes chemical weapons are produced. Peter Poroshenko held intensive negotiations with German leadership and outlined Ukraine's further foreign policy priorities. U.S. sanctions against Russia, probably for the first time, became truly effective, forcing the Kremlin to look for ways to save face. Viktor Orban and his Fidesz Party secured a constitutional majority in the Hungarian parliament.
Week's balance: Partners recommend reforms, Groysman declares war on "secret club of subsoil users," and law enforcers go for useless searches at Ukrzaliznytsia
The World Bank urged Ukraine authorities to speed up reform, Prime Minister Groysman attacked extraction companies from the President's entourage, while law enforcers once again raided the Ukrzaliznytsia headquarters - these are the key economic news of the past week.
Can sanctions against Russian oligarchs hit their Ukraine property
A few years ago, the dependence of the Ukrainian economy on that of its northern neighbor was so strong that a sanctions strike against Russia would ricochet violently over Ukraine. However, despite the fact that the hryvnia today saw no damage from the ruble plunge, a new package of Russia sanctions could still affect certain Ukrainian companies.
Ukrainian interest. Chemical Kremlin, Washington's new sanctions, and Orban's all-in
Sergey Skripal and his daughter Yulia came out of a critical condition amid intensive treatment. Russia's efforts in the UN Security Council and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons found no support. Donald Trump met with presidents of the Baltic States. In Ankara, Recep Tayyip Erdogan applied diplomatic asymmetry. Nord Stream 2 continues its advance toward the practical phase of construction. The U.S. imposed new sanctions against Russian oligarchs and officials. Viktor Orban resorted to unbridled propaganda.
Week's balance: Start of sowing campaign and road repairs, new stage of decentralization and delay of rail ticket price hike
The agrarians started the sowing campaign that will cost them at least 10% more than last year, road repairs were launched after a long winter, Ukrzaliznytsia postponed the increase in train ticket prices, while the authorities announced a new stage of decentralization - these are the main economic news of the outgoing pre-Easter week.
Admiral Ihor Kabanenko: Situation with "Nord" fishing vessel may be a planned provocation by Russia to "legitimize" deployment of its naval group in the Azov Sea
Navy Admiral (Rtd), Former Deputy Minister of Defense of Ukraine Ihor Kabanenko told UNIAN why the Ukrainian coast guards, having seized the Nord vessel in the waters of the Azov Sea, acted lawfully, and hinted that the situation with the Nord could well be a provocation on the part of Russia.
Week's balance: FTA with Israel, paradise for low-cost airlines, and record placement of domestic bonds
The Ministry of Finance made a placement of domestic bonds, this year's largest. Ukraine and Israel are finally set to sign off an agreement on a free trade zone. Discount airlines will open new flights from Ukraine. These are the past week's key economic news.
Ukrainian interest. Poisoned diplomacy, Normandy with no effect, and Orban's "Soros move"
The Salisbury poisoning has led to the largest-scale diplomatic expulsion since the end of the Cold War. Germany has issued all permits for the construction of NordStream-2. Normandy Four leaders spoke for the Easter truce in Donbas – without much effect though. Kurt Volker intends to pay a visit to Donbas. Johannes Hahn stood up for Ukraine's anti-corruption activists. Some in Poland paid attention to the "Kremlin trace" in the amendments to their law on the institute of national remembrance. Victor Orban rushed into the political bayonet attack.
Week's balance: Ryanair in Ukraine, break-up with Russia, billions on roads, and farmers fighting for VAT
The Cabinet of Ministers announced the largest ever road construction and repair efforts in Ukraine, Ryanair discount carrier signed the long-awaited cooperation agreement with the airports Boryspil and Lviv, the government severed economic relations with Russia, while the agrarians continue to demand from deputies to give them back VAT refunds for oilseeds exports - these are the key economic developments of the outgoing week.
Ukrainian interest. Reappointed Putin, encouraging Czaputowicz, and Szijjarto breaking bad
Putin became Russia's president for the fourth time. Even after Brexit, EU states have not lost confidence in London's position. Hungarian foreign minister has crossed the line. The political struggle French foreign minister visited Kyiv. Poland's Jacek Chaputowicz reiterated his country's interest in a democratic and sovereign Ukraine.
Ukraine's Permanent Envoy to CoE Dmytro Kuleba: "Surprisingly, some EU member states still believe dialogue is needed with Russia"
Permanent Representative of Ukraine to the Council of Europe, Dmytro Kuleba, sat down with UNIAN to talk about the diplomatic war with Russia, unofficial talks in this regard on international platforms, effectiveness of foreign policy built on emotional bonds between nations, expected attempts by Russia to meddle in the election campaign in Ukraine, and the need for Ukraine to not use Venice Commission as an arbitrator so much.
Ukrainian interest. Klimkin's landmarks, Mogherini's support, and new State Secretary in Washington
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, in an interview with the BBC Ukrainian Service, outlined goals and priorities of Ukrainian diplomacy. Illegal elections in the occupied Crimea are a litmus test of Kyiv-Moscow relations. Federica Mogherini visited Kyiv. Donald Trump replaced his top diplomat. Robert Fico gave a kind of a lesson to Ukrainian politicians.
Week's balance: Mogherini promises another billion, Smolii takes lead of NBU , hryvnia sees new coins
EU High Representative Federica Mogherini paid a visit to Kyiv, President Petro Poroshenko met with Ukraine's businesses, Parliament finally appointed a new head of the National Bank, who announced the issue of coins instead of small hryvnia bills - these are the key economic news of the outgoing week.
Week's milestones. Terrorist threat, Kobzar and bloggers, and Magnificent Seven in Forbes list
Volodymyr Ruban has turned from a negotiator beloved by some media outlets into a major terrorist threat. Petro Poroshenko promised a decade of the rise of Ukrainian language and chatted with a group of loyal bloggers. Mikheil Saakashvili is trying to sit on two chairs, engaging in politics in two different countries. Seven Ukrainian nationals are part of the Forbes billionaire list.
Russian opposition's Leonid Gozman: The Russian regime today is similar to that of Mussolini. We must make sure that, after Putin is replaced by someone else, this will not be Hitler
Exactly four years after Crimea's illegal annexation, Russia is holding yet another so-called presidential election. Artists diligently play their roles in a play called "election race", while the final is evident to all - the tsar retains his seat in the Kremlin for at least another six years. UNIAN spoke with a Russian opposition politician Leonid Gozman to hear his views on how this will all go down what is likely to follow.