Ukraine (i/juːˈkreɪn/ yew-krayn; Ukrainian: Україна, transliterated: Ukrayina, [ukrɑˈjinɑ]) is a country in Central and Eastern Europe. Ukraine borders the Russian Federation to the east and northeast, Belarus to the northwest, Poland, Slovakia and Hungary to the west, and Romania and Moldova to the southwest.
Ukraine has the world’s largest reserves of manganese ore – 2.3 billion tons or about 11% of all deposits of the world.
The Carpathian Mountains rise in the west and the Crimean Mountains in the south, but the heartland of Ukraine—slightly larger than France—is the rich flat earth that stretches for 1,600 kilometers (1,000 miles), known as the steppe.
Ukraine suffered the world's worst recorded nuclear accident. On the morning of April 26, 1986, reactor No. 4 at the Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant, 80 miles north of Kiev, exploded, sending radioactive contaminants three miles up into the atmosphere and out over parts of Europe, Asia, and North America.
Industry: Coal, electric power, ferrous and nonferrous metals, machinery and transport equipment
Agriculture: Grain, sugar beets, sunflower seed; beef
Exports: Ferrous and nonferrous metals, fuel and petroleum products, chemicals, machinery and transport equipment
Ukraine has a presidential-parliamentary system of government with separate executive, judicial, and legislative branches. The prime minister is appointed by the president with the consent of more than one-half of the parliament. The prime minister, first deputy prime minster, three deputy prime ministers, and cabinet ministers are appointed by the president based on a submission by the prime minister.
Ukrainian and Russian are the principal languages. Although Russian is very widely spoken, in the 2001 census (the latest official figures) 85.2% of the ethnic Ukrainian population identified Ukrainian as their native language. There are also small Crimean Tatar and Hellenic minorities; the former is mainly in Crimea, and the latter in the Donetsk region.
The population of Ukraine is about 45.8 million. Ethnic Ukrainians make up approximately 78% of the total; ethnic Russians number about 17%, ethnic Belarusians number about 0.6%. The industrial regions in the east and southeast are the most heavily populated, and the population is about 69% urban.
The climate of Ukraine is mostly temperate continental. A subtropical Mediterranean climate is prevalent on the southern portions of the Crimean Peninsula. The average monthly temperature in winter ranges from -8° to 2° C (17.6° to 35.6° F), while summer temperatures average 17° to 25° C (62.6° to 77° F).
Natural resources: According to the experts, Ukraine contains approximately 5 per cent of the world's total mineral resources. Ukraine has deposits of more than 80 types of minerals. The Donetsk Basin contains huge reserves of high-quality coal and the nearby iron-ore deposits of Kryvy Rih are equally rich. Other Ukraine's mineral resources include manganese, mercury, titanium, chromium, nickel, bauxite, uranium, phosphate, sulfur and peat.
Area: Ukraine is the largest country in Europe among those with entire boundaries within the European continent. The total area of Ukraine is about 603,700 sq. km. It extends 1316 km from west to east, and 893 km north to south.