April 6 - Petro Poroshenko, a billionaire oligarch known as the ''Chocolate King,'' is the front-runner in Ukraine's presidential election, which has been set for May 25. Vanessa Johnston reports.
He's known as Ukraine's "Chocolate King". Now the billionaire oligarch and politician Petro Poroshenko - who earned his fortune with a chain of confectionary shops - is the front-runner in Ukraine's presidential elections. He's up against former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, a popular but divisive figure. In the recent Ukrainian uprising, Poroshenko came down on the side of the pro-Europe "Euromaidan" movement, appearing with opposition leaders on Independence Square. He also gave it a lot of air time at his "5th Channel" TV station, turning it into a conduit for interviews and opinions which state-owned channels shunned. Poroshenko's pro-Europe stance did not go unnoticed by Russia. Last year Russia's consumer watchdog banned imports of sweets from his Roshen chain of outlets and Russian authorities have closed down a Roshen factory over alleged malpractice. Ukrainians head to the polls on May 25th.