Essay: Russia’s International Relations

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  • Subject area(s): International Relations
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  • Published on: July 24, 2019
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The role of the Delegation involves reflecting upon political events, developments and trends within Russia, as well as between the EU and the Russian Federation, while at the same time supporting the EU-Russia political dialogue.
The Delegation thus monitors political life in the country, including issues relating to the areas of human rights, justice, freedom and security, and developments in Russia’s foreign and defense policy.
Since 2014 the illegal occupation of Crimea and the conflict in Eastern Ukraine have seriously affected the bilateral political dialogue. As a result, some of the policy dialogues and mechanisms of cooperation are temporarily frozen, and sanctions directed at promoting a change in Russia’s actions in Ukraine have been adopted. However, Russia remains a natural partner for the EU and a strategic player combating the regional and global challenges.
Russia is the EU’s largest neighbor, which has always been reflected in extensive cooperation and exchange over the 25 years prior to the current crisis. Russia is a key player in the UN Security Council and, due to history, geographic proximity and cultural links, is one of the key players in Europe and its neighborhood. Russia is also a major supplier of energy products to the EU and a large, dynamic market for EU goods and services, with considerable economic growth.
As members of the United Nations, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and the Council of Europe, the EU and Russia are committed to upholding and respecting the fundamental values and principles of democracy, human rights, the rule of law and the market economy. These values underpin the EU-Russia relationship.
The current legal basis for EU-Russia relations is the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA) which came into force in 1997, initially for 10 years. Since 2007 it has been renewed annually. It established a political framework for regular consultation between the EU and Russia, based on the principles of respect for democracy and human rights, political and economic freedom, and commitment to international peace and security. Furthermore, the PCA is complemented by sartorial agreements covering a wide range of policy areas, including political dialogue, trade, science and technology, education, energy and environment, transport, and prevention of illegal activities. Some of these dialogues and consultations have been suspended following the annexation of Crimea.

International Cooperation

Modern day challenges can best be approached through a sense of joint responsibility and understanding. The EU works in close cooperation with international partners, including Russia. A broad range of foreign policy questions, including security, are best approached through a sense of mutual understanding and concern.
Both the EU and Russia have a long record of cooperation on issues of bilateral and international concern including climate change, migration, drugs trafficking, trafficking of human beings, organized crime, counter-terrorism, non-proliferation, the Middle East peace process, and protection of human rights.
Furthermore, the EU develops a range of informal operational contacts that allow for a detailed understanding of Russian priorities and policies on international issues, provide early warning of potential problems and support the coordination of policy planning.

Vladimir Putin quickly understood that the EU was an undertaking of extending reconciliation in light of standards of business, law and organization at variation from those developing in Russia. He likewise expected that EU expansion would turn into a methods for barring Russia from its “zones of conventional impact”. In spite of these worries, Russia’s exchange with the EU expanded significantly. In 2012, the EU represented 52% of Russia’s fares, 68% of which comprised of fuel and vitality. Until the 2006 Russia-Ukraine vitality emergency, stable relationship was an article of confidence that facilitated political pressures. On this positive premise, transactions on a successor to the 1994 EU-Russia Co-task Agreement started in 2008, and a Partnership for Modernization was closed in 2010.
The Russia– Ukraine gas debate of 2009 harmed Russia’s notoriety for being a gas supplier. After an arrangement was struck amongst Ukraine and the EU on 23 March 2009 to overhaul Ukraine’s gas pipelines Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin debilitated to audit Russia’s relations with the EU. “On the off chance that Russia’s advantages are disregarded, we will likewise need to begin checking on the basics of our relations”, Putin stated. According to Russian Energy Minister Sergei Shmatko the arrangement seemed to attract Ukraine legitimately nearer to the European Union and might hurt Moscow’s interests. The Russian Foreign Ministry called the arrangement “an unpleasant demonstration” (on 26 March 2009). Professor Irina Busygina of the Moscow State Institution for Foreign Relations has said that Russia has better relations with specific pioneers of some EU nations than with the EU all in all in light of the fact that the EU has no prospect of a typical outside strategy.
The EU is Russia’s largest trading partner, accounting for 52.3% of all foreign Russian trade in 2008 and 75% of foreign direct investment (FDI) stocks in Russia also come from the EU. The EU exported €105 billion of goods to Russia in 2008 and Russia exported €173.2 billion to the EU. 68.2% of Russian exports to the EU are accounted for by energy and fuel supplies. For details on other trade, see the table below;
Direction of trade





EU to Russia

€105 billion

€18 billion

€17 billion

€140 billion

Russia to EU

€173.2 billion

€11.5 billion

€1 billion

€185.7 billion

Russia and the EU are both members of the World Trade Organization (WTO). The EU and Russia are currently implementing the common spaces and negotiation to replace the current Partnership and Cooperation Agreement to strengthen bilateral trade.
EU Ambassador to Russia Markus Ederer says the relations between the European Union and Russia have hit rock bottom, and the current period may become more dangerous than the Cold War. He recalled that several important agreements were signed in the field of arms control during the Cold War: the Treaty on Open Skies, the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF Treaty), the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START III). Read also Conflict with Russia could start unpredictably – British army chief “The great powers have been phasing out the Treaty on Open Skies. And the United States and Russia are making serious claims against each other under the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty. Some experts forecast all this may affect the possible prolongation of the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty between Russia and the United States (START III), which is expiring in 2021. I’m worried about this. If we do not try to minimize the threats stemming from this situation, the current period may become more dangerous than the Cold War,” Ederer said in an interview with the Russian newspaper Kommersant. “The relationship between the European Union and Russia seems to be at the lowest level since the end of the Cold War, but there are some signs of stabilization of the situation. Still, there is a mutual lack of trust along with a wide gap in the understanding of how we have reached that point,” he added. Yet, he said, both sides still want to maintain communication channels.

Since 1997 the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement has been the general system of EU-Russia political and financial relations. One of the fundamental destinations of this understanding is the advancement of exchange and venture and in addition the improvement of amicable monetary relations between the EU and Russia. The Partnership and Cooperation Agreement should be overhauled through the transaction of a New EU-Russia Agreement, giving a complete structure to respective relations. The New Agreement ought to have based on the WTO manages and included steady, unsurprising and adjusted guidelines for two-sided exchange and speculation relations. Arrangements began in 2008, yet they were ceased in 2010 on the grounds that no advance was made in the Trade and Investment part.
The EU is in any case by a wide margin Russia’s fundamental exchanging and speculation accomplice, while Russia as the EU’s fourth exchange accomplice is additionally its biggest oil, gas, uranium and coal provider, essential for the EU vitality needs. This financial between reliance of supply, request, speculation and information brought about various joint responsibilities regarding keep up great monetary relations with a particular spotlight on vitality collaboration offering vitality security and financial development to the two sides.
In any case, the unlawful extension of Crimea and the destabilization of Ukraine prompted an amendment of the EU-Russia relations, including the suspension of formal exercises under the PCA and also the formal suspension of arrangements on the New Agreement. Directed prohibitive measures against certain Russian substances and people, and in addition measures went for exchange and interest in Crimea, were additionally received in 2014 and delayed from that point forward.
Exchange between the two economies indicated soak development rates until mid-2008 when the pattern was hindered by the monetary emergency and one-sided measures embraced by Russia which negatively affected the EU-Russia exchange. Since 2010 shared exchange has continued its development, achieving record levels in 2012. In 2012 Russia joined the WTO additionally extending open doors for monetary relations with the EU and other outside accomplices. In any case, issues stay with the Russian usage of the WTO responsibilities which has affected further development. Without a doubt, respective exchange declined as of now in 2013 and it additionally went down in 2014 against the setting of monetary troubles in Russia and exchange confinements presented by Russia on sustenance imports. The solid deterioration of the RUR, the fall in worldwide item costs and the extended monetary subsidence in Russia prompted a further constriction in respective financial relations.

Russia– United States relations refers to the two-sided connection between the United States and Russia. The United States and Russia keep up political and exchange relations. The relationship was for the most part warm under the Russian President Boris Yeltsin (1991– 1999) until the point that the NATO bombarding of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in the spring of 1999, and has since weakened fundamentally. In 2014, relations enormously stressed because of the emergency in Ukraine, Russia’s addition of Crimea in 2015, contrasts with respect to Russian military mediation in the Syrian Civil War, and from the finish of 2016 over Russia’s claimed impedance in the 2016 U.S. decisions. Shared authorizations forced in 2014 stay set up.

Through most the last 50% of the twentieth century, two superpowers, the United States and the Soviet Union, were involved in a battle—free enterprise versus socialism—and a race for worldwide mastery.
Since the fall of socialism in 1991, Russia has approximately embraced popularity based and industrialist structures. Notwithstanding these progressions, leftovers of the nations’ cold history remain and keeps on smothering U.S. also, Russian relations.

Year​Event ​Description

1922-​USSR Born-​The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) is set up. Russia is by a wide margin the biggest part.

1933-​Formal Relations-​The United States formally perceives the USSR, and the nations set up conciliatory relations.

1941-​Lend-Lease-​U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt gives the USSR and different nations a large number of dollars worth of weapons and other help for their battle against Nazi Germany.

1945-​Victory​The United States and Soviet Union end World War II as partners. As prime supporters of the United Nations, the two nations (alongside France, China, and the United Kingdom) end up lasting individuals from United Nations Security Council with full veto specialist over the gathering’s activity.

1947-​Cold War Begins-​The battle between the United States and the Soviet Union for mastery in specific areas and parts of the world is named the Cold War. It will last until 1991. Previous British Prime Minister Winston Churchill calls the division of Europe between the West and those parts overwhelmed by the Soviet Union an “Iron Curtain.” American master George Kennan prompts the United States to take after a strategy of “control” around the Soviet Union.

1957-​Space Race-​The Soviets dispatch Sputnik, the principal synthetic question circle the Earth. Americans, who had unhesitatingly felt they were in front of the Soviets in innovation and science, try harder in science, building, and the general space race.

1960-​Spy Charges-​The Soviets shoot down an American covert agent plane social event data over Russian domain. The pilot, Francis Gary Powers, was caught alive. He put in almost two years in a Soviet jail before being traded for a Soviet insight officer caught in New York.

1960-​Shoe Fits-​Soviet pioneer Nikita Khrushchev utilizes his shoe to strike against his work area at the United Nations while the American delegate is talking.

1962-​Missile Crisis-​The positioning of U.S. atomic rockets in Turkey and Soviet atomic rockets in Cuba prompts the most sensational and conceivably world-shattering encounter of the Cold War. At last, the two arrangements of rockets were expelled.

1970s-​Detente​A arrangement of summits and dialogs, including the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks, between the United States and the Soviet Union prompted a defrosting of strains, a “tranquility.”

1975-​Space Cooperation-​Space Cooperation American and Soviet space travelers connect the Apollo and Soyuz while in earth’s circle.

1980-​Miracle on Ice-​At the Winter Olympics, the American men’s hockey group scored an exceptionally astounding triumph against the Soviet group. The U.S. group went on the win the gold decoration.

1980-​Olympic Politics-​The United States and 60 different nations blacklist the Summer Olympics held in Moscow to dissent the Soviet intrusion of Afghanistan.

1982-​War of Words-​U.S. President Ronald Reagan starts to allude to the Soviet Union as a “malevolent realm”.

1984-​More Olympic Politics-​The Soviet Union and a modest bunch of nations blacklist the Summer Olympics in Los Angeles.

1986-​Disaster-​A atomic power plant in the Soviet Union (Chernobyl, Ukraine) detonates spreading pollution over an enormous region.

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