Ukraine - basic facts

Ukraine is a state in Eastern Europe, bounded on the north by Belarus, on the north and east by the Russian Federation, on the
west by Poland, Slovakia, on the southwest by Hungary, Rumania, and Moldova, and on the south by the Black Sea and the
Sea of Azov.

Ukraine includes the Crimean Autonomous Republic, which was elevated from an oblast to a constituent republic in 1991.

Kyiv is the capital and largest city.

Ukraine is the second largest country in Europe after Russia. The total area of Ukraine is 603,700 sq. km (compare the area
of France - 551,000 sq. km; Germany - 356,000; Great Britain - 244,000; Italy - 301,000; Spain - 505,000). The area
spanned in a west-east direction is 1300 km; from north to south - 900 km.

The population of Ukraine is 52 million (Germany - 78 million; France - 56 million; Great Britain - 58 million; Italy - 59 million;
Spain - 40 million).

Ukraine\'s state border extends for a total of 7698 km: with Russia - 2484 km; Belarus - 952 km; Rumania - 608 km; Poland -
542 km; Slovakia - 98 km; Hungary - 135 km; Moldova - 1194 km. The total length of Ukraine\'s sea coast is 1758 km
(Black Sea - 1533 km; Sea of Azov - 225 km).

The climate of Ukraine is moderate-continental; in the southernmost region of the Crimea the climate is sub-tropical. The
largest river of Ukraine is the Dnipro, which is 2201 km in length, of which 981 km flow through Ukraine. The largest mountain
system in Ukraine is the Carpathian Mountains that extend for more than 270 km and are 100-110 km wide. The highest peak
is the Hoverla (2061 m).


conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Ukraine
local long form: none
local short form: Ukrayina
former: Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic

Digraph: UP

Type: republic

Capital: Kiev (Kyyiv)

Administrative divisions: 24 oblasti (singular - oblast\'), 1 autonomous republic* (avtomnaya respublika), and 2 municipalites
(mista, singular - misto) with oblast status**; Cherkas\'ka (Cherkasy), Chernihivs\'ka (Chernihiv), Chernivets\'ka (Chernivtsi),
Dnipropetrovs\'ka (Dnipropetrovs\'k), Donets\'ka (Donets\'k), Ivano-Frankivs\'ka (Ivano-Frankivs\'k), Kharkivs\'ka (Kharkiv),
Khersons\'ka (Kherson), Khmel\'nyts\'ka (Khmel\'nyts\'kyy), Kirovohrads\'ka (Kirovohrad), Kyyiv**, Kyyivs\'ka (Kiev),
Luhans\'ka (Luhans\'k), L\'vivs\'ka (L\'viv), Mykolayivs\'ka (Mykolayiv), Odes\'ka (Odesa), Poltavs\'ka (Poltava), Respublika
Krym* (Simferopol\'), Rivnens\'ka (Rivne), Sevastopol\'**, Sums\'ka (Sevastopol\'), Ternopil\'s\'ka (Ternopil\'), Vinnyts\'ka
(Vinnytsya), Volyns\'ka (Luts\'k), Zakarpats\'ka (Uzhhorod), Zaporiz\'ka (Zaporizhzhya), Zhytomyrs\'ka (Zhytomyr)
note: names in parentheses are administrative centers when name differs from oblast\' name

Independence: 1 December 1991 (from Soviet Union)

National holiday: Independence Day, 24 August (1991)

Constitution: using 1978 pre-independence constitution; new constitution currently being drafted

Legal system: based on civil law system; no judicial review of legislative acts

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch:
chief of state: President Leonid D. KUCHMA (since 19 July 1994); election last held 26 June and 10 July 1994 (next to be
held NA 1999); results - Leonid KUCHMA 52.15%, Leonid KRAVCHUK 45.06%
head of government: Acting Prime Minister Yeuben MARCHUK (since 3 March 1995); First Deputy Prime Ministers
Yevhen MARCHUK and Viktor PYNZENYK (since 31 October 1994) and six deputy prime ministers
cabinet: Council of Ministers; appointed by the president and approved by the Supreme Council
National Security Council: originally created in 1992, but signficantly revamped and strengthened under President
KUCHMA; members include the president, prime minister, Ministers of Finance, Environment, Justice, Internal Affairs,
Foreign Economic Relations, Economic and Foreign Affairs; the NSC staff is tasked with developing national security policy
on domestic and international matters and advising the president
Presidential Administration: helps draft presidential edicts and provides policy support to the president
Council of Regions: advisory body created by President KUCHMA in September 1994; includes the Chairmen of Oblast
and Kiev and Sevastopol City Supreme Councils

Legislative branch: unicameral
Supreme Council: elections last held 27 March 1994 with repeat elections continuing through December 1998 to fill empty
seats (next to be held NA); results - percent of vote by party NA; seats - (450 total) Communists 91, Rukh 22, Agrarians 18,
Socialists 15, Republicans 11, Congress of Ukrainian Nationalists 5, Labor 5, Party of Democratic Revival 4, Democrats 2,
Social Democrats 2, Civil Congress 2, Conservative Republicans 1, Party of Economic Revival of Crimea 1, Christian
Democrats 1, independents 225; note - 405 deputies have been elected; run-off elections for the remaining 45 seats to be held
by December 1998

Judicial branch: joint commission formed in April 1995 to define