Canadian international assistance in Ukraine

Ukraine, the second-largest country in Europe, with a population of more than 45 million, has close and long-standing ties to Canada. Ongoing efforts highlighted here and in Canada’s Response to the Situation in Ukraine, include development commitments that will help establish a more promising future for Ukrainians.

Ukraine achieved independence in August 1991 upon the dissolution of the Soviet Union. However, over a quarter of a century later, Ukraine is still struggling to consolidate democracy and lay the foundations for economic prosperity.

Following the “Revolution of Dignity” in late 2013 and early 2014, Ukraine’s new government committed to implementing democratic and economic reforms in line with its European aspirations. However, Russian aggression, which started in 2014 with the illegal annexation of Crimea, continues drawing Ukraine into a bloody conflict in the east of the country, which has placed significant pressure and uncertainty on the Ukrainian government’s ability to carry out its much-needed reforms.

According to the latest estimate, nearly 1.8 million Ukrainians have been internally displaced and more than 3 million are in need of humanitarian assistance. Ukraine is facing daunting challenges to simultaneously defend its sovereignty while implementing reforms critical to the country’s economic growth and political stability.

Canada is among the strongest international supporters of Ukraine and its democratic and economic reform processes. To support Ukraine’s reforms and its development needs in order to reduce poverty in the country, Canada is promoting sustainable economic growth and supporting the rule of law and democratic governance. In addition, Canada responds to the humanitarian and recovery needs caused by the conflict in the eastern part of Ukraine.

Our international development assistance

Search the Project Browser to see what Canada is doing to support development in Ukraine.

The goal of Canada’s international development program in Ukraine is to improve economic opportunities for Ukrainians in a strengthened democracy. Canada is working with the Government of Ukraine to assist with the reforms needed to realize the country’s full economic potential and build a sound public institutional and legal environment for closer integration with Europe.

Toward economic recovery and green growth

In order to help Ukraine avoid a total economic collapse following the “Revolution of Dignity”, Canada has taken a comprehensive approach to economic assistance that supports the stabilization, reform and growth of the Ukrainian economy.

Since January 2014, Canada has committed more than $140 million in bilateral development assistance to support economic reform and economic growth in Ukraine. Canada’s assistance to the economic reform process seeks to foster more inclusive private-sector-led growth, investment, and job creation to reduce poverty while support to economic growth promotes local economic development and competitiveness among small and medium-sized businesses, particularly in small-scale farms.

Key anticipated results:

Improving citizen participation

Since January 2014, Canada has committed over $88 million in international assistance to advance democracy, human rights and the rule of law in Ukraine through support to national and local institutions, citizens groups, political parties and independent media.

Canadian support to democratic development focuses on improving citizens’ participation in public life and decision making by assisting political parties and local officials to proactively engage the public and be more responsive to citizens’ needs.

Human rights programming fosters democratization, helping those affected by the conflict, and supports religious freedom and pluralism. Canadian assistance is also supporting Ukraine’s efforts to reform the judicial system and improve independence and access to justice. Canada-funded rule-of-law projects seek to improve consistency, fairness and transparency in the application of justice, in line with international and European norms.

Key anticipated results:

Responding to the humanitarian crisis, resilience

Canada supports bilateral and multilateral efforts to advance peacebuilding and recovery in conflict areas in Ukraine. Canada’s support focuses on initiatives that address both immediate humanitarian and longer-term recovery needs, such as support for agricultural recovery. In addition, Canada works with implementing partners in Ukraine to improve communications about activities and services available to displaced and conflict-affected persons and their host communities.

Key anticipated results:

Progress on aid effectiveness

Canada is a leading bilateral donor in Ukraine. Canada will continue to build Ukraine’s capacity to engage in donor coordination by encouraging joint monitoring of projects and playing an active role in several donor working groups.



Improving citizen participation

Toward economic recovery and green growth

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