GuangMing Ribao interview with Yan Vaslavskiy, Director of the International Analytical Center Rethinking Russia.
Russian, European and US experts discussed the most pressing issues related to the perception of Russia by the West at the “Rethinking Russia” International Conference.
In recent years China has increasingly been in public focus in Russia. This year Russia media have extensively covered China-related issues, while interest in the country’s development trends has been unprecedentedly high. Russian pundits in international affairs show keen interest in the strategy formulation, while think tanks study the ways China’s economy can pick up and boom again. What particular steps can help to handle the challenges China is faced with? Can the bilateral cooperation build a solid foundation to ensure the stability of Russia’s economy?
After the international conference Guangming Ribao’s Chief Reporter put those questions to Yan Vaslavsky, Director of Rethinking Russia think tank in an exclusive interview.
The expert community is monitoring the evolving economic situation in China, Vaslavsky said. It must be noted that despite the slowdown China is still an engine of the world economy. The economic decline must not be viewed as a grave problem, let alone the government’s lost its grip. China is still a healthy and dynamic economy.
China had recently suffered high volatility in the stock market, which the government addressed with a range of effective steps, Vaslavsky added. Considering China’s economic growth requires accentuating Xi Jinping’s well-conceived and open-eyed policies which rest upon the sustainable development principles, with the government prioritizing quality over quantity. In this context, the economic slowdown is not so critical as it can be regarded as an essential prerequisite for future stability.
Russia needs China’s healthy economic growth because it will impact significantly on both the country and the world. The Chinese economy has quite bright prospects given the government’s prudent strategy in particular, Vaslavsky said. Amid the global financial crisis, the PRC establishment has clearly identified its major priorities aimed at facilitating sustainable and gradual development in the long term perspective.
Russia’s leaders need economically and politically stable China, with which it will continue acting in the spirit of partnership and neighborliness, thus reinforcing its positions in the international arena. Today’s bilateral relations are at the zenith. Similar views on the central global issues and behavior patterns allow for greater cooperation. Notwithstanding some divisions, both sides are able to arrive at a compromise and reconcile their differences diplomatically.
Vaslavsky also highlighted the pertinent character of the Sino-Russian relations for the development of Siberia and the Far Eastern territories, by emphasizing the necessity to cement economic ties with APR countries. From the expert’s perspective, Russia is traditionally a Europe-oriented country, but over the recent two years it has considerably tilted eastward, especially in its foreign policies. In this respect, the so called pivot to the East can be portrayed as Russia’s attempt to counterbalance every opportunity offered by both Asia and Europe, with the latter remaining a major partner in Russia’s economic activities abroad.
Touching on Russia’s relationship with the West, Vaslavsky noted that the current crisis would adversely affect the world economy and sustainable development. To counter the negative effects the parties should base their dialogue on mutual understanding and normalized relations. As the political scientist put it, “the interaction between academic circles, in this case, matters greatly”.
The interview was first published by GuangMing Ribao