Russian Foreign Policy, Trade ‘Pivot’ Toward Asia Pacific States Exaggerated
Sputnik/ Mikhail VoskresenskiyWorld10:47 03.09.2017Get short URL
According to the president of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Russia has not completely reoriented its foreign policy and trade toward Asia Pacific countries, it retains partnerships with Western countries.
MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Russia has not completely reoriented its foreign policy and trade toward Asia Pacific countries, it retains partnerships with Western countries, the president of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCI) told Sputnik in an interview ahead of the Eastern Economic Forum.
“We should not call it a complete ‘pivot’ of Russia toward Asia Pacific countries. Our partnerships with European countries, the United States have a long history, which is probably impossible to destroy despite the efforts of some political leaders,” Sergey Katyrin said.
According to the CCI president, Russia’s interest in the East, which has recently been linked to the Western sanctions, is not a new trend.
“This course was set much earlier, and it was initiated by Yevgeny Primakov, who became the Russian foreign minister in 1996. The choice of this course was based on the understanding of the multipolarity of the world, a growing role of Asia Pacific countries in economic and political fields,” Katyrin said.
The CCI head noted that the trade with Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) countries made up almost 30 percent of Russia’s imports and exports, while the EU countries took up almost 44 percent. Russia’s exports to APEC countries grew by almost 35 percent in the first six months of 2017, compared to the same period in 2016, while imports grew by 32 percent.
Katyrin added that the Russian business had learned to work with severely limited access to European and US technologies and other sources.
“The largest US and European companies have made significant investments in the Russian economy, that is why new US sanctions will impact them, too. The business community supports constructive dialogue and improvement of partnerships rather than introduction of some restrictions or bans,” Katyrin said.
On August 2, US President Donald Trump signed a law expanding a number of sectoral sanctions against the Russian economy.
The Eastern Economic Forum will be held in Vladivostok on September 6-7. Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to meet Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on the sidelines of the forum.