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Thursday, February 29, 2024

Russia: Weekly Report (14.08 – 20.08)

This report describes the key events that significantly impacted Russia’s political, economic and social processes.

Based on the results of the past week, the following trends can be summarised:

  • The process of creating a single military-political space along the Russia-China axis continues; including smaller players (Belarus and Korea) in this union is just political scenery. The question is to what extent big players like Iran or India can join this alliance. Rather, their accession today looks problematic due to several contradictions.
  • Preparations for the combined voting day (September 11) are intensifying in Russia. Despite the holiday season, an active struggle between candidates flares up in many regions of the country, which often provokes a reaction in the Kremlin. Soon, we should expect numerous visits by Vladimir Putin to the most problematic regions to put out the fire on the eve of the elections. It is also worth monitoring the situation in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine, where Russia plans to hold elections between September 8 and 10.
  • Russia is actively preparing to reformat not only the “grain deal”. Still, it is also trying to reformat current relations in the global grain market, creating an alternative for Third World countries as a counterbalance to a single centre for coordinating price policy (the Chicago Grain Exchange). Suppose the idea of Russia, Turks and Qatar is successful. In that case, the US will lose its monopoly on the formation of grain prices and control over grain flows worldwide. Most likely, the new initiative will be positively perceived by China and India, not to mention several countries dependent on grain supplies.

This digest examines the following issues that were most relevant for Russia during 14–20 of August:

1. Putin’s meeting with the head of the state corporation “Rosatom” Alexei Likhachev;

2. Moscow Conference on International Security;

3. Putin’s visit to the headquarters of the so-called “SMO” in Rostov-on-Don;

4. New attacks on Russian territories;

5. New format of the “grain deal”;

6. Failure of the Russian lunar program.

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This report describes the key events that significantly impacted Russia’s political, economic and social processes.

Based on the results of the past week, the following trends can be summarised:

  • The process of creating a single military-political space along the Russia-China axis continues; including smaller players (Belarus and Korea) in this union is just political scenery. The question is to what extent big players like Iran or India can join this alliance. Rather, their accession today looks problematic due to several contradictions.
  • Preparations for the combined voting day (September 11) are intensifying in Russia. Despite the holiday season, an active struggle between candidates flares up in many regions of the country, which often provokes a reaction in the Kremlin. Soon, we should expect numerous visits by Vladimir Putin to the most problematic regions to put out the fire on the eve of the elections. It is also worth monitoring the situation in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine, where Russia plans to hold elections between September 8 and 10.
  • Russia is actively preparing to reformat not only the “grain deal”. Still, it is also trying to reformat current relations in the global grain market, creating an alternative for Third World countries as a counterbalance to a single centre for coordinating price policy (the Chicago Grain Exchange). Suppose the idea of Russia, Turks and Qatar is successful. In that case, the US will lose its monopoly on the formation of grain prices and control over grain flows worldwide. Most likely, the new initiative will be positively perceived by China and India, not to mention several countries dependent on grain supplies.

This digest examines the following issues that were most relevant for Russia during 14–20 of August:

1. Putin’s meeting with the head of the state corporation “Rosatom” Alexei Likhachev;

2. Moscow Conference on International Security;

3. Putin’s visit to the headquarters of the so-called “SMO” in Rostov-on-Don;

4. New attacks on Russian territories;

5. New format of the “grain deal”;

6. Failure of the Russian lunar program.

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