Ukraine is located in the Southeast Europe, being the second largest country on the European continent, after Russia. The country is bordered by Belarus, Russia, Moldova, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, Poland and by the Black Sea to the south. Ukraine consists largely of fertile black soil steppes; mountainous areas include the Carpathians in the southwest and the Crimean chain in the south.
Ukraine is a parliamentary- presidential republic, which consist of twenty-four provinces (oblasts). The capital of Ukraine is Kyiv.
The history of Ukraine throws back to the times of Kyiv Rus, a medieval polity, which was the largest and most powerful state in Europe during the 10th and 11th centuries. Ukraine again became as the separate unite on the map of Europe when the Soviet Union dissolved in 1991. This dissolution started a period of painful transition to a market economy.
Since then a lot of foreign companies came to Ukraine, bringing investments and forcing the country to a new development level. With rich farmlands, industrial base, highly trained labor force of 20 million, and good education system, Ukraine has high potential; still the biggest obstacles in Ukraine are underdeveloped infrastructure and transportation, corruption and bureaucracy.
Ukraine maintains peaceful and constructive relations with all its neighbours; trying to balance between European Union integration and Russian ties.