U.S. Embassy Kyiv Chargé d'Affaires Kristina Kvien has listed two main challenges that hinder the development of Ukraine.
She announced this during her speech at the event of Open Ukraine: Arseniy Yatsenyuk Foundation, dedicated to the presentation of the document, titled: "Twelve Points to Strengthen the Strategic Partnership between the United States and Ukraine" at the Kyiv Security Forum on March 10.
The diplomat recalled that the Joe Biden Administration had confirmed that the United States remains committed to Ukraine as one of its closest partners and friends.
The U.S. could help Ukraine address the "shared priorities of resolving the conflict in eastern Ukraine and fighting the corruption that poses a significant obstacle to inclusive economic growth and Ukraine's Euro-Atlantic integration.
She believes that, in addressing these priorities, President Volodymyr Zelensky has faced challenges.
"On the peace process, Ukraine's attempts to reinvigorate negotiations have been blocked, largely by Russian intransigence. On the fight against corruption, we have witnessed persistent attacks by vested interests who seek to undermine independence and effectiveness of Ukraine's anti-corruption infrastructure in an effort to avoid accountability for their corrupt behavior," Kvien underlined.
"These vested interests have also pursued a wide-ranging disinformation campaign here in Ukraine intended to discredit the reform agenda and Ukraine's western trajectory," she added.
At the same time, despite challenges, this fact that certain key and long-sought reforms are advancing leaves the envoy encouraged.
"Land reform is expected to be implemented this summer, for the first time creating a land market that will help unleash Ukraine's vast agricultural potential. Security Service reform has passed its first reading in parliament and the president has recently committed to pursuing comprehensive judicial reform – a very necessary step to reduce corruption in Ukraine," said Kvien.
The diplomat has assured that the U.S. will further work with Ukraine across the full spectrum of interests.
"We have been working closely with Ukraine to develop and strengthen the independent institutions that are so important to maintaining and defending accountability in any democracy. From the National Bank to anti-corruption bodies, to the court system, the malign influence of vested interests cannot be curbed without strong, independent institutions," the diplomat stressed.