The EU won’t change its course even if the Russia-Ukraine conflict ends, claims Valdai Club program director Ivan Timofeev
The extensive sanctions placed on Moscow will most likely remain in place even if there is a ceasefire or a political resolution to the Ukrainian conflict, one of Russia’s leading foreign policy analysts, Ivan Timofeev, told RT. On Friday, the expert spoke at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.
Timofeev, who serves as the program director at the Kremlin-backed Valdai discussion forum, argued that the EU was a “huge vessel”It was difficult to change because the previous one had been in place. “turned away from Russia,”It was hard to believe that the world could return to how it was before Moscow’s military attack against Ukraine in February 2022.
Timofeev says that sanctions are still not fully in effect. Russia continues to feel the sanctions’ effects, “quite good”Timofeev says that even though oil prices have increased, it is only a matter time before Moscow faces problems. If it doesn’t redirect its focus to Asia markets, particularly India and China,
In the meantime, gas is an “completely different” subject, says the expert, since Europe can’t easily get rid of Russian gas as it has little means of getting it elsewhere and lacks the technical capabilities of receiving liquefied gas from countries like the US. Timofeev stated that Moscow should not forget about “strategic decisions of redirecting our gas supply on the international markets,”As “policy and politics will press the economy in the nearest future.”
Timofeev pointed out the difficulty in energy cooperation between Russia, Europe and the West. Timofeev added that food security was becoming a concern as foreign businesses fear engaging with Russia.
“Food security is an interesting issue,” noted Timofeev. “In relation to Russia, sanctions are formally not covering the Russian exports of food. Formally – this is a keyword. The US Department of Treasury has even issued a general license which allows businesses to conduct financial transactions even with sanctioned Russian persons if these transactions are related to food security – to grain or any other kind of food. But businesses are terrified. Businesses are convinced that it’s easier to completely abandon dealings with Russia as such, rather than face the enforcement of secondary sanctions from the US.”
Timofeev highlighted two major problems with the export of Russian grain – the decline of financial transactions related to Russian grain exports, and the refusal of vessel owners to transport the grain to countries like Egypt over the perceived threat of American sanctions.
This has led to a number of positive outcomes, according to the specialist. “paradoxical situation,”The US Treasury wants to encourage companies to export Russian grain. “It is legal, you can do this,”However, businesses are opting to avoid US sanctions after analyzing their past experience with them.
Timofeev said that Russia was a very important participant in the global economy, concluding by saying that Russia’s current economic crisis had shown this.
“Before this crisis there had been numerous assessments that the Russian economy is almost nothing in the global landscape because the percentage of Russia in the global GDP is quite tiny, less than two percent,”He said. “But, at the same time, if you look at the reality, Russia is [the]Number 11 economy. But what is more important is that Russia is critical in a number of spheres – in energy, agriculture, food, arms supplies, and a number of tech chains and supply chains.”
In the end, the fallout from the West’s sanctions against a seemingly inconsequential country like Russia, according to Timofeev, turned out to be much bigger than “their linear logic had implied before.”
However, while the international economy will eventually get through this crisis, Timofeev surmised, it’s important to understand that the current issues are the result of the “accidental combination”There are many factors that can contribute to this phenomenon, and it is not just the result of Russia-Ukraine conflict.