The Valdai Discussion Club Foundation, in cooperation with its partners, launched a new research project on Eurasian integration with a workshop in Shanghai on November 16-17. The aim of the project is to examine the entire Eurasian space in four dimensions and from four perspectives. The four dimensions are economic, political, security and social; and the four perspectives are Russian, Central Asian, Chinese and EU/US.
Over 200 Russian and foreign experts attended the 10th meeting of the Valdai Club. The participants focus on analyzing the internal processes and external challenges to work out a vision of Russia in the future.
Evaluating Russia’s development index during the annual poll this year, experts of the Valdai Discussion Club spoke positively about the country's growing role in national, regional and global security, foreign policy and soft power. Most negative assessment was given to performance of Russia’s political institutions, public confidence in them and the dynamics of economic development.
The research poll analyses five basic valuable aspects of contemporary Russian identity. In particular, the respondents were proposed to reflect over following principal aspects: culture, religion, ethnicity, self-identification, patriotism etc.
This report is based on discussions held at the Valdai Club's Middle East Dialogue conference, which took place in Marrakesh, Morocco, on May 14-15, 2013. The event was attended by high-profile politicians from the Middle East and North Africa, including leaders of Islamist movements, as well as prominent experts, analysts and journalists from Russia and around the world.
12/11/201309:00 Russia has become very adept in playing the diplomatic game, in which victory depends on choosing the right associate or partner. But there are a growing number of claimants to this role in the new horizontal and interdependent world. Aside Syria and Iran, being still important, the new venues for the application of practical diplomacy may well be Ukraine, the East China Sea and Afghanistan.
12/05/201310:30 New ties between Russia and Japan would mark not only a breakthrough in their relations but also a significant shift in Northeast Asia’s political dynamic. Both are secondary players in a region overshadowed by an increasingly assertive China, which has not hesitated to push against the boundaries of its neighbors.
11/19/201311:40 Asia Pacific is becoming a foreign policy priority for Russia. This is logical, as it is the most rapidly developing geopolitical region. Not only is the global economic and political center of gravity shifting to the region, the direction and forms of humanity’s future development largely depend on it. Russia’s interests cannot be fully reconciled with the interests of the United States or China.
11/12/201311:46 Could Russia’s attempts to establish closer ties with countries of Southeast Asia or Indochina become an issue in its relationship with China? Putin’s visits to Vietnam and South Korea will focus on certain infrastructure projects, certain easing of tensions in bilateral relations and by no means taking any steps that could undermine the major bilateral treaty with China.
11/01/201310:26 With the world’s political and economic focus gradually shifting to the Asia-Pacific region, bilateral relations between China and Russia are facing new challenges and opportunities. For both China and Russia, the current changes may have a more profound impact on and significance for readjusting their development strategies than any changes that took place in previous decades.
10/17/201310:45 The achievements of Russian politics, including the emerging possibility for energy exports are related to the transition to a strategic partnership with China. Attempts to find other partners ranging from Japan and ASEAN countries to New Zealand and the United States have failed. The Russian-Chinese Big Treaty remains the key resource of Russia’s policy in the Pacific, as it was ten years ago.
09/19/201310:20 The United States is no longer the only country whose opinion can have decisive influence on Asia-Pacific countries’ policies. China can take on the US here, said the experts polled during the 10th meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club in the Nizhny Novgorod Region. They also said that Russia’s presence in the region should grow.
09/13/201310:39 Beijing has recently been pursuing the expansion of the SCO’s scope from being one of political consensus and the discussion of security matters to a regional mechanism that has a potent economic component. As the global workshop and as a country that has colossal financial resources, China is able to advance economic projects and realize its economic interests related to energy resources and the acquisition of new markets.
07/30/201310:12 Apparently, the Russian leadership and the new heads of the Defense Ministry have remained largely satisfied with the degree of readiness of the Russian armed forces in the Far East. This is all the more significant, because the troops stationed in Siberia have traditionally been considered somewhat inferior to their counterparts in European Russia.
07/05/201312:51 Russia would really like to resolve the Korean Peninsula’s tensions, because Russia then can build the Trans-Korean pipeline and use that as another avenue to reach out to rest of East Asia. And that would benefit U.S. goals by raising living standards in North Korea and the state of regional stability.