Ukraine is in Eastern Europe, bordering the Black Sea, between Poland, Romania, and Moldova in the west and Russia in the east. Temperate continental; Mediterranean only on the southern Crimean coast; precipitation disproportionately distributed, highest in west and north, lesser in east and southeast; winters vary from cool along the Black Sea to cold farther inland; summers are warm across the greater part of the country, hot in the south. Most of Ukraine consists of fertile plains (steppes) and plateaus, mountains being found only in the west (the Carpathians), and in the Crimean Peninsula in the extreme south. The official language is Ukrainian, which is closely related to Russian and Belarusian. Russian is widely used in Ukraine, notably in the east, south, Kyiv and Crimea. However, there are local sensitivities; speaking Russian in the west of the country or speaking Ukrainian in the east or Crimea may cause offence. The main religion is Christianity. The economy of Ukraine showed strong export-based growth of 5 to 10 percent, with industrial production growing more than 10 percent per year in the early 2000s before the impact of the financial crisis. Ukraine produces nearly all types of transportation vehicles and spacecraft. Antonov airplanes and KrAZ trucks are exported to many countries. The majority of Ukrainian exports are marketed to the European Union and CIS. The security risk for expatriates in Ukraine is high overall but extreme near the eastern border regions (Donetsk and Luhansk). Risks include protests, civilian clashes, weak rule of law, armed separatist militia groups, and sporadic fighting between rebels and government forces. The population in Ukraine is 45.9 Mil (2014 est.), while the inflation rate is 12% (2014 est.).
Cost Of Living
The cost of living for expatriates in Ukraine as at 1 January 2015 is very low in comparison to other places in the world. In Ukraine, the cost of each basket, based on local prices, compared to the international average in USD, is categorized follows: 1) Alcohol (where available) & Tobacco: Low 2) Clothing: Very High 3) Communication: Very Low 4) Education: Very Low 5) Furniture & Appliances: Very Low 6) Groceries: Very Low 7) Healthcare: Very Low 8) Household Accommodation: High 9) Miscellaneous: High 10) Personal Care: Very Low 11) Recreation & Culture: Very Low 12) Restaurants Meals Out and Hotels: Low 13) Transport: Very Low Ukraine is for example -32.2% cheaper than Uruguay for groceries, 39.5% more expensive for household costs than South Africa, and -32.3% cheaper for transport costs than Greece. Ukraine is ranked as a extreme hardship location. Hardship (also know as quality of living) refers to the degree of hardship an expatriate and their family are likely to experience in the host location. Hardship pay is compensation to encourage people to move, in particular to less desirable locations. In determining the amount of hardship premium payable, factors such as economic, political, religious, infrastructure, environment/climate, personal safety, health, education, and transportation factors are considered. The hardship premium for the Ukraine for an expat from Switzerland, is for example 30%, i.e. host location (the Ukraine) premium of 40% minus home (Switzerland) location premium of 10%. Xpatulator.com has been created to assist subscribers calculate expatriate pay using the online calculators and extensive database of cost of living and hardship indexes, for 780 international locations. Want to know more about cost of living, hardship or expat pay in Ukraine? Register subscribe to your home location and Ukraine and run your personalised reports.