On January 21 the Valdai Club hosted an expert discussion, titled “President Biden’s Foreign Policy: What Should the World Expect?”
A new political cycle in the United States is set to begin, with the outgoing President Donald Trump departing amid an unprecedented crisis. Domestic problems have increased uncertainty regarding President-elect Joseph Biden’s foreign policy plans, including Washington’s policy toward Russia. A number of “toxic assets” have accumulated in Russian-American relations, which could lead to another round of hostile activity. Biden’s team has repeatedly stated the need for a tough approach to relations with Russia. At the same time, Biden intends to extend the New START Treaty, which expires in early February. However, according to experts, this is unlikely to become a prologue to an improvement in bilateral relations. In recent years, the US administration has imposed an unprecedented amount of sanctions, and Russia remains America’s strategic rival, on par with China, according to official US foreign policy documents, and the general tone of statements about Russia is unequivocally hostile.
Tensions are high in US-China relations. During the Trump presidency, they entered a stage of open rivalry. The trajectory of Washington’s relations with its allies in Europe is not obvious. Biden’s victory sparked euphoria in European capitals. However, the big question remains how to solve the accumulated problems. Among them are the defence spending of the US European allies in NATO, trade and economic relations, secondary sanctions, different approaches to climate change, and others.
What will be the legacy of Trump’s foreign policy? How will relations with Russia develop? Will US foreign policy be re-made from scratch? What will the priorities of the new administration be? The participants in the expert discussion will answer these and other questions.
Valery Garbuzov, Director of the Institute for US and Canada Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences;
William Pomeranz, Deputy Director of the Wilson Center’s Kennan Institute;
Andrey Tsygankov, Professor of International Relations at the University of California, San Francisco;
Fyodor Voitolovsky, Director of the National Research Institute of World Economy and International Relations (IMEMO RAS);
William C. Wohlforth, Daniel Webster Professor, Department of Government, Dartmouth College.
Ivan Timofeev, Programme Director of the Valdai Discussion Club.