-based consultants have routinely argued that Viktor Yanukovych and the Party of Regions have changed into a modern and democratic party. Little evidence has been shown to prove this argument but nevertheless the mantra has been chanted at every available opportunity.
Two factors explain such dogged claims. This first is the ideological support for an oligarch-controlled economy and lack of scholarly objectivity. The Yulia Tymoshenko government came under intense criticism by US think tank senior fellows in academic and media articles who used every speaking engagement to attack its record as “odious.”
At the same time, these senior fellows have never criticized the Yanukovych government for pursuing anti-market reform policies: oil price capping, banning grain exports and non-transparent insider privatizations. They have never sought to criticize any aspect of the Party of Regions, which includes numerous senior deputies from the Kuchma era, such as energy mogul Yuri Boiko and former Central Election Commission Chairman Serhi Kivalov, as ‘odious’ in the same way as the criticism that they unleashed against the Tymoshenko government and BYuT.