Economic cooperation between Ukraine and Russia in the Black Sea region


Economic cooperation between Ukraine and Russia in the Black Sea region

Эксперты МГИМО: Гусев Леонид Юрьевич, к.ист.н.

Located at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, the Black sea throughout centuries has been a contention and opposition zone. From an antiquity the region traditionally has carried out a role of a backyard of one or two powers which dominated and closed it for other world. Then, at the time of cold war, it appeared on a first line of world struggle for domination.

Within 40 years members of the NATO, Turkey and Greece, protected the south and the southeast of the Black sea while members of the Warsaw Pact, Soviet Union, Bulgaria and Romania, dominated on its other space. However, despite the fact that the region has been divided by strategic rivalry the East-West, this intense political and military balance actually provided stability though it was accompanied by a marginalization, political dissociation and an economic paralysis.

Existence of blocks excluded possibility of many significant communications and cooperation of various coast of this sea region. At the same time this situation has led to isolation of some countries and the people of region from other world.

With the termination of the «cold war», geopolitical position of the Black sea was transformed beyond recognition.

Communism falling has led to renewal of confrontations and the collected historical intensity. It has led to disintegration of superpower, a birth of 6 new sovereign states and of some separative movements. It also has opened region to outside influences and a competition and at the same time was marked by occurrence of slow process of regional building.

In my report I would like to consecrate, as in the Black Sea region economic cooperation between Ukraine and Russia is carried out.

At first some citations —

The president of Fund of support of the international cooperation of Ukraine, the former head the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Anatoly Zlenko has noticed that the Black Sea region by the position remains in the main transit knot between the West and the East, therefore safety issues and regional cooperation in the Black Sea region don’t lose an urgency. Interest to this territory is shown by all main players in the world political arena, including EU and the NATO. Thus after the introduction of Romania and Bulgaria into EU interest to region only grows.

The adviser of embassy of the Russian Federation in Ukraine Alexey Urin has noticed in his speach that the Black Sea region is a key region in which Russia sees three main blocks of priorities. It is development of trade, which today on recession, transport development, including sea transport, and development of energy, jointly with other countries working out of shelves of oil and gas that opens for all Black sea countries huge possibilities which aren’t used now. Alexey Urin is convinced: there are no threats of the international safety concerning the Black Sea region. And not to let to arise them, it is necessary, in its opinion, to process and realize joint projects.

For Ukraine and Russia one of important strategic interests is certainly, maintenance of stability of regional safety in Azovo-Black Sea regions. In the conditions of extending tendencies of economic development of the Azovo-Black Sea region and an aggravation of the international resource problems it can become arena of large economic and ecological contradictions.

The First Russian-Ukrainian an inter-regional economic forum with participation of presidents of Russia and Ukraine passed in Gelendzhik on 4th of October of 2010. It collected a significant amount of heads of subjects of the Russian Federation and areas of Ukraine, the ministries, departments, and representatives of business circles. In the agenda of the Russian-Ukrainian negotiations there were such priority directions of cooperation, as economy, transport, including bridge building through Kerch strait, nature protection activity, in particular measures on economic improvement of the river Severski Donets. In Gelendzhik Russia and Ukraine signed the Program of inter-regional and frontier cooperation of the Russian Federation and Ukraine for 2011–2016.

On November, 26th, 2010 in Moscow the fourth session of Interstate commission under the chairmanship of presidents of two countries took place. Positive dynamics in the Russian-Ukrainian relations in the most various directions, the increased intensity of contacts between representatives of Russia and Ukraine in many spheres were noted. It is underlined that settlement of remaining problem questions of bilateral interaction should be conducted on the basis of search of compromises and mutually beneficial decisions.

At negotiations prospects of trade and economic and investment cooperation, development gas and atomic engineering, transport, the space and aviation industry were discussed. The special attention was given to a Russian-Ukrainian military and military-technical cooperation, measures on simplification of an order of crossing of frontier by citizens of Russia and Ukraine, optimization of placing of check points. Questions of humanitarian interaction, possibility of the further deepening of the international cooperation, including, on regional problems were considered.

Following the results of session some documents, among which — «About the organization of building of transport transition through Kerch strait» are signed.

Also between Ukraine and Russia the intergovernmental agreement — «About cooperation in sea both aviation search and rescuing by the Black and Azov seas» was signed.

Cooperation in shipbuilding sphere.

On April, 15th 2010 Ukrainian state company «Black Sea ship-building factory» (Nikolaev) and the Russian Open Society «Production association» Northern machine-building enterprise «(Severodvinsk) concluded the contract on cooperation in shipbuilding sphere.

As it was said in press-release of „Smart holding“ which has Black Sea Ship-building factory, cooperation of the enterprises assumes an exchange of experts and increase of their qualification, an exchange of experience in sphere of innovative technologies, mutual advancement of production and services, assistance in attraction of orders. „We lay hopes on cooperation with the Russian giant of shipbuilding. Time has come to restore the lost cooperation in the field of shipbuilding, and our partnership with „Sevmash“- the first stage in this direction“, — expressed optimism the general director of the Ukrainian enterprise Dmitry Mordovenko.

„Conditions of the Ukrainian shipyards allow the Russian side to bring an attention to the question on that we could build the serious ships on them, and we want to do it, and the agreement on the Black Sea fleet opens road to it “, — the committee-man of the State Duma of defense Michael Nenashev has told on April, 23rd.

The deputy has noticed that cooperation between Russia and Ukraine in the area of shipbuilding and ship repair includes coproduction of the ships, instead of their varnishing and painting. He told that at the time of Victor Yushchenko presidency Russia and Ukraine many years have carried on ineffectual negotiations on completion in Nikolaev city of a new rocket cruiser. „At the Nikolaev ship-building factory there is a rocket cruiser“ Ukraine — such class as „Moscow“ and „Ustinov“, this ship is necessary to us, and it can be accepted in structure of the Navy of Russia», — Nenashev told, having underlined that the new agreement «opens road of the concrete arrangement on completion of this ship and transfer it to Russia».

Also in May of 2010, Russia and Ukraine signed agreements in which had been said that «in the interests of struggle against an illegal craft and contraband of seafood» and intend to improve information interchange concerning navigation safety in the Black Sea region.

Besides, Russia and Ukraine will work in common over strengthening of ecological safety of Black sea.

For today between Russia and Ukraine there is not settled a question about delimitation of sea border in Kerch strait and sea of Azov. In 1991, after disintegration of USSR, Ukraine defined the sea border in the area of a gully between Krasnodar territory and island Tuzla. After that the navigable part of Kerch strait appeared on the Ukrainian party. Kerch strait — a unique exit from sea of Azov. Movement of courts on it is organized now on two lines — belonging to Ukraine deep-water Kerch-Enikale channel, and also on the Russian waterways № 50 and 52, calculated on the vessels having small deposit. Annually through Kerch strait 9 thousand ships passes, following in the Russian ports of Azov, Rostov, Temryuk. The Russian vessels passing on Kerch-Enikale channel, pay navigating and pilotage services, and also a number of other gathering. In the Contract on the Russian-Ukrainian frontier signed on January, 28th, of 2003 Presidents of Russia and Ukraine defined overland border between two states. The question on sea border is allocated in a separate subject for negotiations. The Russian side at development of main principles of settlement in Azovo-Kerch water area suggests to recognize that sea of Azov and Kerch strait have the status of internal waters of two states and remain in the general using for navigation and fishery. As to a bottom and bowels of Sea of Azov they are offered to be differentiated between Russia and Ukraine for the purposes of entrails using. Ukraine insists that the differentiation line should pass in Azovo-Kerch water area both on a bottom, and on a water table.

Concluding I should say that cooperation between Ukraine and Russia in the region of the Black sea is that now and I hope that it will be developing in the consecutive way for mutual benefit of both states.

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