Ukraine–Serbia relations

Serbia–Ukraine relations

Serbian-Ukrainian relations
Map indicating locations of Serbia and Ukraine



Serbian-Ukrainian relations are foreign relations between Serbia and Ukraine. SFR Yugoslavia recognized Ukraine in December 1991 by the decision on the recognition of the former republics of the Soviet Union. Diplomatic relations between Ukraine and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia were established on 15 April 1994.

Ukraine has an embassy in Belgrade. Serbia has an embassy in Kiev. Current Ukrainian Ambassador to Serbia is Anatoliy Tymofiy Oliynyk and the current Serbian Ambassador to Ukraine is Goran Aleksić. Serbian Ambassador in Ukraine is accredited to Moldova on non-residential basis. Ukrainian Ambassador in Serbia is accredited to Montenegro on non-residential basis.

Since September 2011 Ukrainians and Serbians can stay in the other ones country for up to 30 days without visas.

History and ethnic relations

There are numerous Ukrainian organizations in Serbia. Ukrainian national minority has its own National Council with seat in Novi Sad. They are closely related to Pannonian Rusyns (Ruthenians). Ukrainian-Rusyn organizations have seats in Inđija, Sremska Mitrovica, Vrbas, Kula, Đurđevo, Ruski Krstur, Šid, Kucura and Subotica. According to the 2002 census there were 5,354 ethnic Ukrainians in Serbia and 15,905 Rusyns, mostly living in Vojvodina.

In 19th century on territory of today's Ukraine there were two provinces populated by Serbs - New Serbia and Slavo-Serbia. By the decree of the Senate of 29 May 1753, the free lands of this area were offered for settlement to peoples of Orthodox Christian denomination in order to ensure frontier protection and development of this part of Southern steppes. Slavo-Serbia was directly governed by Russia's Governing Senate. The settlers eventually formed the Bakhmut hussar regiment in 1764. Also in 1764, Slavo-Serbia was transformed into the Donets uyezd of Yekaterinoslav Governorate (now in Dnipropetrovsk oblast, Ukraine). According to the 2001 census there were only 623 Serbs living in Ukraine (219 spoke Serbian, 104 spoke Ukrainian, 218 spoke Russian and 68 some other language).

Political relations

Serbia and Ukraine have been active in bilateral meetings. In January 2001, President of Ukraine Leonid Kuchma paid a visit to Belgrade and met with the then President of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Vojislav Koštunica. Prime Minister Dragiša Pešić, visited Ukraine in September 2001. President of Serbia and Montenegro Svetozar Marović, visited Ukraine in November 2003. Deputy Prime Minister of Serbia, Božidar Đelić, met with Oleksandr Turchynov, first deputy prime minister in Kiev after the EBRD annual meeting where they have discussed future free trade agreement and situation in Kosovo. President of Ukraine Viktor Yushchenko visited Serbia in June 2009, during the XVI Summit of Heads of Central European States in Novi Sad.

Foreign Minister of Serbia, Goran Svilanović visited Ukraine in February 2002. Ukrainian Minister of Defense Yevhen Marchuk, visited Serbia in February 2004. Ukrainian Foreign Minister Kostyantyn Hryshchenko, visited Serbia in October 2004. In January 2005 Serbian Foreign minister Vuk Drašković, visited Ukraine on the occasion of the inauguration of President Viktor Yushchenko. Drašković visited Ukraine again in June 2005 and March 2006. Ukrainian Foreign minister Borys Tarasyuk visited Serbia in January 2006 and Arseniy Yatsenyuk visited Serbia in July 2007.

Zoran Šami, Speaker of the National Assembly, met Ukraine’s Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada Volodymyr Lytvyn, during the session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Organization of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation in Kiev in June 2005.

Mayoress of Belgrade, Radmila Hrustanović, visited Kiev in June 2002.

Officials of Serbia and Ukraine have had important meetings in multilateral arenas as well. The most important was the meeting between Presidents Kuchma and Koštunica at the Earth Summit 2002 in Johannesburg.

Pora, a civic youth organization from Ukraine, was trained by members of the similar organization from Serbia - Otpor!. Otpor movement helped bring down the regime of Slobodan Milošević during 5th October and they trained Pora members in organizing Orange Revolution against the regime of Leonid Kuchma.

In 2008, after the Serbian province of Kosovo unilaterally declared independence as the Republic of Kosovo, Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada Committee for Foreign Affairs, Oleh Bilorus, stated that "Ukraine will back Serbia's stand on Kosovo". Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko said that Ukraine must come up with a concept of how to regard the issue of Kosovo, either as a unique phenomenon in the world, or in the context of existence of Transdniester, Abkhazia, South Ossetia and other separatist regions.

Economic relations

In 2007 exports from Serbia were US$97,700,000 and imports from Ukraine were over US$274,000,000. In 2008 the trade between the countries grew by 71%.

Ukraine and Serbia will sign a free trade agreement in autumn 2009. Ukraine supports Serbia's intention to join the World Trade Organization.

Culture and education

Serbia and Ukraine signed the Agreement on Cooperation in the Fields of Education, Culture and Sports on 24 January 1996. On the basis of this Agreement a Program of Cooperation between the two countries for the period 2002–2004 was signed in February 2002. It was agreed to extend this agreement to cover 2005 through exchange of diplomatic notes. A Memorandum of Understanding was signed on cooperation between the Diplomatic Academies at the Foreign Ministries of the two countries.

Defense cooperation

Ukraine and Serbia signed a Treaty on military cooperation on 4 November 2003 and ratified in August 2004. Based on this treaty there were four meetings of working groups for enhancement of the cooperation. Priorities set by two sides are mutual army modernization, development and production of arms and military equipment, involvement of Serbian companies in decontamination of radioactive ammunition in Ukraine, joint operation in third markets, exchange of information, expert consultations and training of military staff.

See also


External links

Lesser coat of arms of Ukraine
Americas Asia Europe
Disputes Related topics

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