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My Country Project: Ukraine

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My Country Project: Ukraine

"Ukraine, country located in eastern Europe, the second largest on the continent after Russia."  (Encyclopedia Britannica, 2017) It is bordered by the Black Sea to the south and the Sea of Azov to the southeast. Surrounding countries include; Russia, Poland, Belarus, Moldova, Romania, Hungary, and Slovakia. The country was part of the Soviet Union, known as the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, although, between the two world wars, Ukraine was ruled by Poland, Romania, Czechoslovakia. The country declared sovereignty on July 16, 1990, when the Soviet Union began to unravel, and was completely independent in December 1991 after the dissolution of the U.S.S.R. and changed its name to Ukraine.

 Due to the exceptionally well fertile black soils cultivation of sugar beets has been an important industrial crop. Grains that are grown in the Ukraine include; wheat, barley (grown mostly for animal feed), corn, oats, rye, millet, buckwheat, and rice. In the Carpathian foothills and in the cooler regions of the north, potatoes are the major crop grown. Fruit is grown throughout the Ukraine, especially in Crimea. Cattle, pigs, chickens, geese, and turkeys, are the major livestock raised throughout the country. "The Black Sea estuaries and the Sea of Azov are Ukraine’s main fishing grounds. Among the major rivers for fishing are the Dnieper, Danube, Dniester, Southern Buh, and Donets. Fish catches have declined because of heavy pollution."  (Encyclopedia Britannica, 2017)

 High concentrations of mineral deposits can be found near each other, one of the world's largest manganese-bearing ore deposits can be found near Nikopol. "Rich iron ore reserves located in the vicinity of Kryvyy Rih, Kremenchuk, Bilozerka, Mariupol, and Kerch form the basis of Ukraine's large iron-and-steel industry." (Encyclopedia Britannica, 2017)

The country is heavily dependent on fossil fuels and nuclear power for its energy sources. In 1986, there was a major nuclear accident in Chernobyl that triggered an environmental movement that spurred the drive to independence from the Soviet Union, the last working nuclear reactor in Chernobyl was closed the year 2000.

 Ukraine's economy is very fragile, disruptions in production and export capacities, along with significant capital outflows has weakened the country’s currency and reserves. Russia's occupation of Crimea in 2014, and the ongoing aggression in the east has hurt the country's economic growth. Ukraine's population is about 42.7 million people. (Heritage.org, 2017) The primary composition of Ukraine's Gross Domestic Product is made up of 14.4 percent agriculture, 26.3 percent industry, and 59.3 percent services. The GDP annual growth rate averaged 2.53 percent from 2000 until 2017, reaching an all-time high of 14.3 percent in 2004, and a record low of -19.6 percent in 2009. The GDP real growth in 2016 was 2.3 percent, -14.3 percent in 2014, and -6.6 percent in 2015. The GDP per capita was $8,200 in 2016, $8,100 in 2014, and $8,900 in 2015. (Indexmundi.com, 2017) As of June 2017, Ukraine's Nominal GDP reached $24,826.1 USD, with a 20.0% increase in the GDP deflator, and the Core CPI increased 8.10 in October 2017. The real GDP was worth $93.27 billion USD in 2016, it saw a 2.1% expansion in September 2017 following a 2.3% growth increase in the previous quarter. (Ceicdata.com, 2017)

In June 2017, the employment rate dropped to 9.10%, The rate that was reported in March 2017 was 1% higher at 10.10%. (Tradingeconomics.com, 2017) The number of employed persons in Ukraine increased to 15658.10 thousand in the second quarter of 2017 from 15226.10 thousand in the first quarter of 2017.  The employed persons averaged 18005.75 thousand from 2005 until 2017, reaching an all-time high of 19465.90 thousand in the third quarter of 2008 and a record low of 15226.10 thousand in the first quarter of 2017. The employment rate in Ukraine increased to 65.10 percent in the second quarter of 2017 from 63.30 percent in the first quarter of 2017, and averaged 65.67 percent from 2005 until 2017, reaching an all-time high of 68.10 percent in the third quarter of 2008 and a record low of 63.30 percent in the first quarter of 2017.

The currency used in the Ukraine is called Ukrainian Hryvnia (UAH). Minimum Wages in Ukraine increased to $120.7 (3200 UAH) per month in 2017 from $58.51 (1550 UAH) per month in 2016. Minimum Wages in Ukraine averaged $28.27 (760 UAH) per month from 2000 until 2017, reaching an all-time high of $120.27 (3200 UAH) per month in 2017 and a record low of $3.40 (90 UAH) per month in 2000. The average salaries and wages gradually increased in the first half of 2017. In October 2017, the average wage was $271.25 USD/month (7337 UAH), which was a small increase from the reported average wage of $270.30 USD/month (7351 UAH) in September 2017. (Tradingeconomics.com, 2017)

On October 26th, 2017, The Central Bank of Ukraine hiked its key discount rate by 100 basis points to 13.5% surprising markets who expected no changes. It is the first rise in borrowing cost since March 2015. In September, the inflation accelerated to 16.4 percent from 16.2 percent in August, mainly due to rising raw food prices, production costs and a revival of consumer demand. Policymakers also raised inflation forecasts for this year (12.2 percent from 9.1 percent) and 2018 (7.3 percent from 6 percent). Interest Rate in Ukraine averaged 40.08 percent from 1992 until 2017, reaching an all-time high of 300 percent in October 1994 and a record low of 6.50 percent in August 2013.

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