Diplomatic relations were established on February 8, 1992.
On August 19, 1992 the first Apostolic Nuncio to Ukraine, Archbishop A.Franco presented his credentials. Since May 21, 2011 T.E.Gullickson has taken up his position as the Apostolic Nuncio to Ukraine.
Embassy of Ukraine to the Holy See has its location in Rome since 2000.
Official dialogue between the two states was initiated by the visit of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine A.Zlenko to the Holy See in April 1993, during which he was received by the Pope John Paul II.
Official visit to Ukraine of the Pope John Paul II in June 2001 became a truly historical event in bilateral relations. The Pontiff visited Kyiv and Lviv, met with state officials and held religious services for millions of believers.
Recent visits of particular importance of Ukrainian high rank officials to the Holy See:
December 16, 2011 - visit to the Holy See of the Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine B.Kolesnykov as head of Ukraine's delegation to the celebration of "Ukrainian Christmas in Vatican";
March 18-19, 2013 - visit to the Holy See of the Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine K.Gryshchenko to participate in the ceremony of inauguration of Pope Francis;
October 24, 2013 - visit to the Holy See of the Foreign Minister of Ukraine L.Kozhara.
Nowadays relations between Ukraine and the Holy See are quite dynamic. Cooperation with Ukraine is within the scope of the priority interests of the Holy See. Vatican’s recognition of the role and place of Ukraine in Europe is a fundamentally important achievement of bilateral relations of recent years.
Cooperation between Ukraine and the Holy See in international organizations is characterized by sufficiently high level of trust and successful cooperation. In 2013, such cooperation was particularly important within the framework of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe. International conference "Christians in the OSCE region: the state of their religious freedoms" which took place on November 29 in Rome with the support of the Ukrainian Chairmanship of the OSCE may serve an example of successful interaction in this regard. The conference was organized by the Embassy of Ukraine to the Holy See and Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office on Combating Racism, Xenophobia and Discrimination against Christians (in 2013 the mandate of the Personal Representative was carried out by the Ambassador of Ukraine to the Holy See Tetiana Izhevska).
Relations between the two states have traditionally been marked by a high level of cultural and humanitarian cooperation. Culture is tightly intertwined with spiritual values, and therefore regarded by the Apostolic See as one of the major tools for the implementation of its educational and missionary objectives. In this context, cultural events play the role of a "key" to the development of bilateral dialogue and establishment of contacts. The positive dynamics of bilateral cooperation in this area is also favoured by mutual interests and centuries-old history of cultural ties between Ukraine and Vatican. Some of the most important recent projects in this sphere:
March 2 - May 9, 2010 - exhibition of the masterpieces of Ukrainian iconography and sacred art objects from the funds of the National Kyiv-Pechersk Historical Cultural Preserve and the Lviv National Andrey Sheptytskyy Museum called "The Golden Age of Ukrainian icon: XVI-XVIII centuries" (Ancona, Italy);
May 24, 2011 - international conference "St. Clement of Rome in the context of the mission of Sts. Cyril and Methodius" (Pontifical Oriental Institute, Rome);
December 16, 2011 - a unique image and information promotion project "Ukrainian Christmas in Vatican", the highlight of which was the inauguration of the Christmas tree from Ukrainian Carpathians at St. Peter's Square. In addition to the main tree for the St. Peter's Square Ukraine also presented Vatican 43 smaller Christmas trees for the decoration of papal apartments, main squares and the palaces of Vatican;
October 13-15, 2012 - a concert of the National Academic Choral Capella "Dumka" in the Roman church “Santa Maria degli Angeli e dei Martiri” on the occasion of the anniversary celebrations of St. Sophia Cathedral in Rome;
May 29 - July 5, 2013 - exhibition "European dimension. Three masterpieces of classical art" at the National Bogdan and Varvara Khanenko Museum of Art (Kyiv). Two of the three masterpieces on display - tapestry "Amazing catch" by drawing of Raphael and painting "Jesus Christ" by Guido Reni, have been specially selected for the said exposition by the art agency "Artifex", accredited in Vatican.
The Holy See, by virtue of its specific nature, does not participate in any bilateral projects in trade, economic and investment cooperation with other states. However, Vatican investments have been actively involved in mutual cultural projects.
Ukrainian diaspora and religious community in Vatican have an important stake in promotion of dialogue between Ukraine and the Holy See. It should be noted that citizens of Ukraine do not reside in Vatican, living on the territory of Rome and Italy. Characteristic feature of the Ukrainian diaspora in Rome is the fact that some of its members are citizens of different states: USA, Canada, Brazil, Germany, Australia, Czech Republic and others. This often serves as a unifying factor in terms of strengthening working contacts of the Embassy with foreign diplomatic missions to the Holy See.