NEWSWATCH: “Russia and Ukraine: More similar than either wants to admit” – bne Intellinews/Anders Åslund

“… Russians see themselves as economically superior while Ukrainians cherish their freedom. Yet … economically the similarities are greater than the differences. Their current fundamental problem is their absence of real property rights. … Russia experienced an attempt at serious market economic reform from 1991-94 … avoid[ing] Ukraine’s … hyperinflation in 1993. While Russia’s situation was bad, Ukraine’s was far worse. This policy difference laid the groundwork for Russia’s GDP per capita at current exchange rates being three times higher than Ukraine’s …. * * * … the ruling elites … are not interested in protecting property rights [but] … maintenance of their monopoly rents. … dead against real property rights and fair courts. …”

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[featured image is file photo from another occasion]