All these factors are all the more important for Ukraine, but it has patently failed to utilize its opportunities.
In 1989, Ukraine had a gross domestic product per capita that was 10 percent higher than Russia’s. Today its per capita GDP is barely one-third of Russia’s at current exchange rates. Even more worrisome, it is only one-third of Turkey’s GDP per capita, because unlike Ukraine Turkey jumped on the bandwagon of European economic integration concluding a customs union with the EU.
Ukraine’s convergence with Europe is not happening, and the country lingers at a mere 8 percent of the GDP per capita of the euro area. It is laudable that Ukraine joined the World Trade Organization in 2008, but now it has to proceed.