Ukrainian president Volodimir Zelensky has talked on the phone with the German Chancellor Angela Merkel about visiting each other.
Zelensky is going to Germany, and Merkel is visiting Kyiv in the near future. The two leaders had a phone conversation on Tuesday about mutual visits in the near future, according to Interfax-Ukraine.
“Volodymyr Zelensky confirmed the invitation to Angela Merkel to visit Ukraine to participate in the inaugural summit of the Crimean Platform and events marking the 30th anniversary of our country’s independence,” the message reads.
The Chancellor repaid the favour by inviting Zelensky to Berlin to discuss a number of issues with the relationship between Ukraine and Germany. On a political level, the two countries do have their differences. The biggest one being Nord Stream 2, a gas pipeline running from Russia to Germany.
The pipeline would make Ukraine completely unnecessary for Russian gas transport to the European Union, which Ukraine would lose quite a sum of money on. In addition, some Ukrainian politicians and experts have expressed worries, that Nord Stream 2 completion would also mean that Russia has one less incentive to not attack Ukraine.
“On a special date, spoke with Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel that the world must do everything to prevent such tragedies as WW2 from happening again. Grateful for the invitation to visit Berlin on July 12 to discuss current security and cooperation issues of Ukraine & Germany,” the president said on Twitter.
Secondly, the two world leaders also do have some controversy surrounding the reform agenda of Ukraine, where Germany, EU and IMF is putting more pressure on Ukraine to implement reforms, than the country is currently managing.
On the other hand, Germany is one of the most important trading partners for Ukraine. The two countries export goods for around 8 billion USD in total. The trade balance is in Germany’s favour.
Germany is also one of the countries participating in the Normandy Format, where a peaceful solution to the conflict in Donbas and the annexed peninsula Crimea. In these negotiations, Germany is publicly expressing support for the Ukrainian perspective.