While there has been a reawakening of sorts between Russia and Ukraine, relations between the two remain essentially unbalanced and tensions over gas disputes and trade are likely to continue to undermine bilateral relations.
While the European Union is keen to strengthen its relations with Ukraine, some member states are wary of the lack of democracy and the weak rule of law in the country.
Promoting democracy in the six post-Soviet countries in Eastern Europe that were designated by the European Union as deserving special attention will require the EU to offer incentives for implementing reforms.
A legally binding free-trade agreement could be a key instrument in the EU's efforts to push Ukraine to reform.
Amid growing concern over Viktor Yanukovych’s policies, the question remains to what extent the current political set-up in Ukraine can withstand international and domestic pressure.
There is widespread concern both inside Ukraine and in the international community about the country’s course as fears grow that Viktor Yanukovych’s policies are rolling back Ukraine’s political freedoms.
With emerging powers such as China, India, and Brazil capturing the limelight at this year’s World Economic Forum in Davos, Ukraine seemed to have little to share with the world and even less to learn from it.
After nine months in power and a fresh victory in October’s local elections, the Yanukovich government’s record raises important questions about the future of Ukraine.
The return of Viktor Yanukovych, who was elected president of Ukraine in February, has sparked fears among some that the momentum of Ukraine’s domestic political and economic reforms would be lost.
Though the eight newest EU are committed to eventually adopting the euro, they all already suffer from the problems that dragged Greece into crisis, suggesting that none of them are ready to join the Euro area yet.