Ukraine (Ukrayina) is a semi-presidential republic in Eastern Europe. It became independent after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. The country is bordered to the north by Belarus and Russia, to the east by Russia, to the west by Poland, Slovakia and Hungary, to the south-west by Moldova and Romania, while to the south the country overlooks the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov.
The capital of the country is the city of Kiev. Other major cities are: Kharkiv (Kharkov), Dnipropetrovsk, Odessa, Donets’k, Zaporižžja, L’viv and Sevastopol. The Ukraine is after Russia the largest country of Europe in terms of surface area.
THE GEOGRAPHY OF UKRAINE
Ukraine consists mainly of flatlands and is covered with forests and steppes. Some large rivers such as the Dnepr (the third longest river in Europe), the Dniestr and the Donets are flowing here, while to the extreme south-west of the country the Danube marks the border with Romania.
The plains stretch in the central and eastern areas, while to the south-west the landscape is more mountainous; on the far southwestern edge the Ukrainian territory is crossed by the Carpathian mountain range. The highest peak of the country – the Goverla mountain with 2.061 meters – is located here.
The Ukrainian coast along the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov is mostly flat, sometimes swampy. Only along the southeastern coast of the Crimean peninsula are mountains above 1.500 meters to be found.
The Ukrainian economy is an economy based on industry, agriculture and stock farming. Agriculture produces cereals (like maize), sunflowers, fruits, cotton, vegetables. The raising of cattle and pigs is also important.
Ukraine was one of the most industrialized areas of the former Soviet Union. Today the country has among its leading sectors those of high technology (aeronautics and space industry), steel industry and industrial processing of agricultural products. There is coal and iron ore mining.
The climate of Ukraine.
English text correction by Dietrich Köster.
- Area: 603,628 sq km
- Population: 46,000,000. Ukrainians (78%), Russians (17%)
- National Capital: Kiev (Kyiv)
- Languages: The official language is Ukrainian, being the first language of 67% of the population. The well-known Russian language is the first language of 30% of the population.
- Religion: Orthodox Christians (80%), Catholics (10%).
- Currency: Hryvnia (UAH)
- Time: UTC+2 (Summer: Daylight Saving Time UTC+3).