The following is the text of the U.S.-Ukraine Charter on Strategic Partnership signed by U.S. Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba in Washington, D.C. on November 10, 2021.
The United States and Ukraine:
- Reaffirm the importance of our relationship as friends and strategic partners, based both on our shared values and common interests, including a commitment to a Europe that is whole, free, democratic, and at peace. Reiterate that the strategic partnership existing between our two nations is critical for the security of Ukraine and Europe as a whole.
- Underscore that our partnership is founded on common democratic values, respect for human rights and the rule of law, and a commitment to Ukraine’s implementation of the deep and comprehensive reforms necessary for full integration into European and Euro-Atlantic institutions in order to ensure economic prosperity for its people.
- Commend Ukraine’s significant progress towards improving its democracy as well as its commitment to continuing democratic reform, which are crucial for advancing democracy throughout Eastern Europe.
- Emphasize unwavering commitment to Ukraine’s sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders, including Crimea and extending to its territorial waters in the face of ongoing Russian aggression, which threatens regional peace and stability and undermines the global rules-based order.
- Declare our determination to deepen our strategic partnership by expanding bilateral cooperation in political, security, defense, development, economic, energy, scientific, educational, cultural, and humanitarian spheres.
- Affirm the commitments made to strengthen the Ukraine-U.S. strategic partnership by Presidents Zelenskyy and Biden on September 1, 2021.
- Intend to use the Strategic Partnership Commission (SPC), its Working Groups and other bilateral mechanisms to maximize the potential of our cooperation and address the challenges outlined in this Charter.
Section I: Principles of Cooperation
This Charter is based on core principles and beliefs shared by both sides:
- Support for each other’s sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity, and inviolability of borders constitutes the foundation of our bilateral relations.
- Our friendship and strategic relationship stem from our fundamental mutual understanding and appreciation for the shared belief that democracy and rule of law are the chief guarantors of security, prosperity, and freedom.
- Cooperation between democracies on defense and security is essential to respond effectively to threats to peace and stability.
- A strong, independent, and democratic Ukraine, capable of defending its sovereignty and territorial integrity and promoting regional stability, contributes to the security and prosperity not only of the people of Ukraine, but of a Europe whole, free, democratic, and at peace.
Section II: Security and Countering Russian Aggression
The United States and Ukraine share a vital national interest in a strong, independent, and democratic Ukraine. Bolstering Ukraine’s ability to defend itself against threats to its territorial integrity and deepening Ukraine’s integration into Euro-Atlantic institutions are concurrent priorities.
The United States recognizes Ukraine’s unique contribution to nuclear nonproliferation and disarmament and reaffirms its commitments under the “Memorandum on Security Assurances in Connection with Ukraine’s Accession to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons” (the Budapest Memorandum) of December 5, 1994.
Guided by the April 3, 2008 Bucharest Summit Declaration of the NATO North Atlantic Council and as reaffirmed in the June 14, 2021 Brussels Summit Communique of the NATO North Atlantic Council, the United States supports Ukraine’s right to decide its own future foreign policy course free from outside interference, including with respect to Ukraine’s aspirations to join NATO.
- The United States and Ukraine intend to continue a range of substantive measures to prevent external direct and hybrid aggression against Ukraine and hold Russia accountable for such aggression and violations of international law, including the seizure and attempted annexation of Crimea and the Russia-led armed conflict in parts of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Ukraine, as well as its continuing malign behavior. The United States intends to support Ukraine’s efforts to counter armed aggression, economic and energy disruptions, and malicious cyber activity by Russia, including by maintaining sanctions against or related to Russia and applying other relevant measures until restoration of the territorial integrity of Ukraine within its internationally recognized borders.
- The United States does not and will never recognize Russia’s attempted annexation of Crimea and reaffirms its full support for international efforts, including in the Normandy Format, aimed at negotiating a diplomatic resolution to the Russia-led armed conflict in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Ukraine on the basis of respect for international law, including the UN Charter. The United States supports Ukraine’s efforts to use the Crimea Platform to coordinate international efforts to address the humanitarian and security costs of Russia’s occupation of Crimea, consistent with the Platform’s Joint Declaration.
- The United States and Ukraine endorse the 2021 Strategic Defense Framework as the foundation of enhanced Ukraine-U.S. defense and security cooperation and intend to work to advance shared priorities, including implementing defense and defense industry reforms, deepening cooperation in areas such as Black Sea security, cyber defense, and intelligence sharing, and countering Russia’s aggression.
- The United States and Ukraine are key partners in the broader Black Sea region and will seek to deepen cooperation with Black Sea Allies and partners to ensure freedom of navigation and effectively counter external threats and challenges in all domains.
- The United States remains committed to assisting Ukraine with ongoing defense and security reforms and to continuing its robust training and exercises. The United States supports Ukraine’s efforts to maximize its status as a NATO Enhanced Opportunities Partner to promote interoperability.
- Ukraine intends to continue to enhance democratic civilian control of the military, reform its security service, and modernize its defense acquisition processes to advance its Euro-Atlantic aspirations.
- The United States and Ukraine underline the importance of close cooperation within international institutions, including the United Nations, the OSCE and the Council of Europe, and intend to multiply efforts in finding new approaches and developing joint actions in preventing individual states from trying to destroy the rule-based international order and forcefully to revise internationally recognized state borders.
- The United States and Ukraine intend to support accountability for those responsible for abuses of human rights in the territories of Ukraine temporarily occupied by Russia, and to support the release of political prisoners and hostages held in these territories. The United States intends to continue to support impartial criminal investigations conducted by war crimes units under the Office of the General Prosecutor.
- The United States intends to continue assisting Ukraine in providing humanitarian support to people affected or displaced by the Russia-led armed conflict in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions as the government of Ukraine increases its provision of life-saving assistance in the form of food, shelter, safe drinking water, and protection for the most vulnerable, including the elderly.
- The United States remains committed to enhancing Ukraine’s ability to secure and police its borders, and to pursuing greater information sharing and law enforcement cooperation to counter international criminal and terrorist activity, including the trafficking of people, weapons, and narcotics.
- The United States and Ukraine pledge to combat the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and secure advanced technologies by adhering to international nonproliferation standards, strengthening, and effectively implementing export control regimes, and partnering to manage emerging technology risks.
- The United States and Ukraine are committed to further developing their partnership in cyber security, countering hybrid threats, combating the spread of disinformation while upholding freedom of expression, and strengthening Ukraine’s cyber security infrastructure.
Section III: Democracy and Rule of Law
The United States and Ukraine are bound by the universal values that unite the free people of the world: respect for democracy, human rights, and the rule of law. Strengthening the rule of law, promoting reform of the legal system and of law enforcement structures, and combating corruption are crucial to the prosperity of Ukraine and its people.
- The United States acknowledges the progress made by Ukraine in strengthening its democratic institutions and welcomes the important steps taken by Ukraine to develop an effective national justice and anti-corruption system. The United States and Ukraine recognize the need for Ukraine to further pursue a comprehensive reform agenda to keep transforming the country and ensure a bright future for all people in Ukraine.
- The United States intends to continue to support Ukraine’s commitment to strengthen efforts to combat corruption, including through independent media and journalism, and empower institutions that prevent, investigate, prosecute, and adjudicate corruption cases to bolster faith in rule of law, build a competitive economy, and to integrate Ukraine fully into European and Euro-Atlantic structures.
- The United States recognizes Ukraine’s progress on reforms, including steps forward on defense and defense industry reforms, the establishment of independent anti-corruption institutions, land reform, local governance and decentralization, and digitalization. The United States intends to continue supporting further law enforcement and justice sector reforms in line with international best practices to strengthen public trust in the institutions responsible for upholding the rule of law in Ukraine.
- The United States and Ukraine intend to continue to cooperate closely to promote remembrance, including increased public awareness of the Holodomor of 1932-1933 in Ukraine, and other brutalities committed within and against Ukraine in the past.
- The United States and Ukraine confirm the importance of advancing respect for human rights, and fundamental freedoms in accordance with international commitments and obligations, as well as fighting racism, xenophobia, anti-Semitism, and discrimination, including against Roma and members of the LGBTQI+ communities.
- The United States and Ukraine share a desire to strengthen our people-to-people ties and enhance our cultural, educational, and professional exchanges that promote innovation, scientific research, entrepreneurship and increase mutual understanding between our people.
Section IV: Economic Transformation
The United States and Ukraine intend to expand cooperation to support economic reform, enhance job creation, foster economic growth, support efforts under United States-Ukraine Trade and Investment Council to expand market access for goods and services and to improve the investment environment, including through enhanced protection and enforcement of intellectual property. Ukraine’s continued adoption and implementation of reforms are critical to ensuring that its economy delivers for all of its people. The United States supports the ambitious transformation plan for Ukraine’s economy aimed at reforming and modernizing key sectors and promoting investments. The United States and Ukraine recognize the need to advance Ukraine’s energy security and to take urgent action to tackle climate change through sustainable, effective, and durable policy solutions underpinned by ongoing corporate governance reform.
- The United States and Ukraine intend to strengthen economic and commercial ties, promote liberalization of trade conditions and facilitate access to markets for goods and services. The United States intends to support Ukraine’s efforts to create a robust investment environment built on the principles of rule of law, a fair judiciary, transparency, respect for workers’ rights, innovations and digitalization, and strong protections for intellectual property.
- Ukraine pledges to prioritize efforts to reform corporate governance in its state-owned enterprises and banks, which are intended to promote robust and inclusive economic growth in the Ukrainian economy and the bilateral U.S.-Ukrainian economic relationship. The United States intends to continue working with Ukraine in these efforts. The United States intends to also expand its support to privatization initiatives, work with Ukraine to create an environment that attracts U.S. investment in these initiatives, support private sector development, and strengthen financial sector supervision.
- The United States is committed to the energy security of Ukraine and intends to support Ukraine’s efforts to become energy independent, decarbonize its economy, deregulate its energy sector, diversify energy supplies, integrate with Europe’s energy grid, modernize its nuclear sector, manage a just transition from coal, and prevent the Kremlin’s use of energy as a geopolitical weapon. The Strategic Energy and Climate Dialogue is designed to accelerate these efforts.
- The United States and Ukraine intend to work together to promote commercial partnership between Ukrainian and U.S. companies to significantly increase their participation in both economies, particularly, projects in energy, agriculture, infrastructure, transportation, safety and security, healthcare, and with a special focus on digitalization.
- The United States and Ukraine intend to continue cooperation in the exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes, and in implementing other mutually beneficial initiatives within bilateral science and technology cooperation.
- The United States and Ukraine reaffirm the need to strengthen Ukraine’s healthcare infrastructure and its capacity to react to and manage pandemics, such as the COVID-19 pandemic. The United States intends to continue to explore pathways for providing Ukraine with assistance to advance these objectives.
This Charter replaces the U.S.-Ukraine Charter on Strategic Partnership, signed at Washington on December 19, 2008. The United States and Ukraine intend to revise this Charter every ten years or earlier if both sides believe that changes are needed.