The two-fold decline in Latvian investment in Ukraine and the absence of the Ukrainian Ambassador to the Republic of Latvia are the main problems that currently exist in the bilateral relations between Latvia and Ukraine. These are the results of analysis of the foreign policy of Ukraine and the Republic of Latvia presented by the Center “New Europe” together with the Latvian Institute of International Affairs in Ukraine Crisis Media Center. “The appointment of the Ambassador of Ukraine to Latvia is very important during the pre-election period, as well as taking into account the anniversary of the relations between Ukraine and Latvia,” said Kateryna Zarembo, Deputy Director of the Center “New Europe”.
Kateryna Zaremba, one of the authors of the research, noted that Latvia has an interesting approach to Ukraine. “Latvia does not try to teach Ukraine. Speaking of the cooperation sharing experience with the EU member states, it is always an attitude of one partner to another, not of a teacher to a student,” she said.
Elizabete Vizgunova, the expert of the Latvian Institute of International Affairs and the author of the research, emphasized that Latvia plays an important role in Ukraine’s European integration. “Latvia is a very strong supporter of the sanctions regime against Russia. It is also supporting Ukraine very adamantly in international forums. Latvia has also been trying to contribute to Ukraine’s security”, said Elizabete Vizgunova.
“I think, per capita, we are one of the most committed and engaged countries in the European Union. We do not share direct borders as it has been said. We do not claim that we are brothers, but we believe that we are good partners. I consider important to stress again that we are fully behind your territory independence, independent foreign policy. It is our strategic goal in Latvian and European foreign policy to bring our relations as closely as possible, as strategic as possible,” said Andrejs Pildegovičs, State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Latvia. He also stressed that Latvia could share its experience with Ukraine in educational reform and language politics.
“We have never had one material or a book that would concentrate our bilateral relations. I hope that this research will become the basis for the following materials”, – concluded Juris Poikans, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Rebuplic of Latvia to Ukraine.