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Geographical position of Ukraine

Ukraine is a sovereign state whose independence was declared in 1991. Before that it was one of the republics of the USSR. The name Ukraine is of Slavic origin and is connected-genetically with the word «Ukraine» which originally meant «borderland». It is really a borderland of Europe, the gateway to Asia and its desolate steppe region, on the outskirts of the Mediterranean Sea and on the border between the forests and the steppe.

Ukraine is situated in the south-eastern part of Central Europe, and it borders on other European countries: Russia, Byelorus, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Moldova and Romania. The territory of our country is 603,628 square kilometres, making it the largest country entirely within Europe. It is slightly larger than France, much larger than Great Britain but considerably smaller than the USA and Russia. The population of our country is about 46 million people. If we compare it with Great Britain which has 54 million people, we'll see that the density of population in Ukraine is much less. 68% of the population is urban, and 32% is rural. Not only Ukrai­nians live in our country. There are also Russians, Jews, Byelorussians, Moldovans, Rumanians, Greeks, Tatars, Poles, Hungarians, Armenians, Germans, Gypsies and some other ethnic minorities.

The territory of Ukraine is mostly a level treeless plain, called the steppe. Ukraine is not a mountainous country, though there are the Crimean Mountains in the Crimean Peninsula and the Carpathian Mountains in the west of the country; both not very high. The Carpathians are the only mountainous natural boundary of Ukraine. Mountains cover only 5% of the whole area of Ukraine. They are covered with mixed forests of pine, fir, beech and oak trees. There are many picturesque mountain resorts there and winter sports are very popular. The thickest forests in Ukraine can be found in Volyn; they are part of the famous Byelovezhskaya Puscha. The Crimean Mountains are an all year round tourists' and mountain-climbers' attraction. They are close to the second natural boundary of Ukraine - the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov which are famous for their holiday centres and children's summer camps.

The Ukrainian landscape can't be called monotonous, it has some diversity as its plains are broken by highlands - running in a continuous belt from northwest to southwest - as well as by lowlands. The largest highland area is the Dnieper Upland, which lies between the middle reaches of the Dnieper and Southern Buh (Pivdeny Bug), rivers in west-central Ukraine. It is broken by many rivers, valleys, ravines and gorges, some of them more than 1,000 feet deep.

The main river in the country is the Dnieper which is the fourth longest in Europe after the Volga, the Danube and the Ural. One of the oldest Ukrainian cities, its capital Kyiv is situated on both sides of this wide and powerful river. The Dnieper has many tributaries which unify central Ukraine economically, connecting the Baltic coast countries with the Black Sea and the Mediterranean Sea. The mouth of another Ukrainian river, the Danube, provides an outlet for our country's trade to the Balkans, Austria and Germany. The Danube River connects Ukraine with 7 European countries. Other less important rivers of Ukraine are the Dniester, the Southern Bug, the Desna, the Prypyat, the Severskiy Donets and about 70 thousand small rivers. Lake Synevyr is the biggest lake in the Carpathian Mountains of Ukraine. It is located in Mizhhiria Raion, Zakarpattia Oblast. Svityaz is the deepest lake in Ukraine, with a maximum depth of 58.4 m. It is the second largest in the country. Svitiaz belongs to the Shatsk's lakes, which are located in Polissya in the utmost north-western corner of Ukraine, close to the borders with Poland and Belarus. The lake is part of Shatsky National Natural Park (Shatsk Raion, Volyn Oblast).

The biggest cities of Ukraine are Kyiv, Kharkiv, Lviv, Dnipropetrovsk, Zaporizhiya, Donetsk, Odesa, Mykolaiv and some others. Main industrial enterprises are concentrated in and around them. They pro­duce planes, turbines, different kinds of machines and equipment, and various consumer goods.


Decide which of these statements are true and which are false.

1. Ukraine is situated in the south-east of Europe.

2. It has only two natural borders.

3. Ukraine borders on 8 countries.

4. The territory of Ukraine is smaller than that of France but larger than Great Britain's.

5. Fewer people live in Ukraine than in Great Britain.

6. More people live in the country than in the city.

7. The Crimean Peninsula with its mountains is in the west of the country.

9. There are deposits of iron ore in Donetsk Basin.

10. The main rivers of Ukraine are important trade routes.



Date: 2015-12-11; view: 1289

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