Since gaining independence in 1991, Ukraine has regularly espoused a willingness to participate in greater European integration. Despite initiation of a political dialogue between the European Union and Ukraine, however, and the signing of a Partnership and Cooperation Agreement in 1994, Ukraine did not adopt legislative reforms or undertake concrete structural changes that would have brought it c...
Paperback: 132 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (August 3, 2014)
Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.3 x 11 inches
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ropean Union norms and values. In addition to the poor performance of Ukraine’s economy and a perceived lack of democracy, relations between the European Union and Ukraine suffered because of an unwillingness of the European Union to expand into the post-Soviet space. Consequently, Ukraine remained ambivalent about its foreign policy goals: supportive of European Union membership, yet lacking societal pressures and the political will to pursue a more assertive policy of Europeanization. The Orange Revolution of late 2004, and the implementation of the European Neighbourhood Policy, significantly improved Ukraine's European prospects. This work examines Ukraine’s efforts to undertake the process of Europeanization since the Orange Revolution. Economic integration, energy cooperation and judicial reform serve as case studies. Successful progress in implementing the economic and energy provisions of bilateral agreements, such as the Joint European Union-Ukraine Action Plan and the European Union-Ukraine Association Agenda, indicates Ukraine is Europeanizing its economic and energy sectors. Recently concluded negotiations culminating in the drafting of an Association Agreement are further evidence of Ukraine’s Europeanization efforts. On the other hand, judicial reforms aimed at guaranteeing an independent judiciary devoid of political interference, remains a significant challenge. Council of Europe recommendations on draft legislative reform measures intended to fulfill European standards are inadequately implemented by Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada. The European Union’s critical reaction to the October 2011 trial and conviction of former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko is further evidence of Ukraine’s lagging efforts to Europeanize its judiciary. Absent strong incentives from the European Union to adopt concrete judicial reforms, Ukraine’s record of Europeanization, though much more promising compared to what it had been before the 2004 Orange Revolution, remains ultimately mixed.