2010 GDP: $137.9 billion
2010 FDI: $6.5 billion
Ukraine is Europe's second largest country and one of two Eastern European nations to make the list of the worst places to do business in. Since gaining independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, the country has been caught between seeking closer integration with Western Europe and reconciling with Russia, which provides for most of Ukraine's energy needs.
The country ranks among the very bottom when it comes to ease of paying taxes, dealing with construction permits, and access to electricity, to name a few. It takes 27 days for businesses to pay taxes in Ukraine, with the total tax rate at more than 57 percent of a company's profit. The amount of time it takes to pay taxes is more than double the time in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. Getting a construction permit also requires more than double the number of days than it does on average in OECD countries.
Ukraine is not new to political unrest. In 2004, after an allegedly rigged election, Viktor Yanukovych, who supported reconciliation with Russia, came to power and sparked mass protests, known as the "Orange Revolution." After a repeat election, pro-West supporter Viktor Yushchenko was sworn in as president in 2005. Political bickering continues to attract world attention, however. Last month, one of the leaders of the Orange Revolution and former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko was sent to jail for seven years on charges of abuse of power involving a gas deal with Russia in 2009.