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Russian Challenges

Between Freedom and Energy


Edited By Galina Michaleva and Andrey Ryabov

This book analyses the influence that oil and gas have on various sides of Russia’s contemporary internal and foreign policy. On the one hand, the factor oil and gas enabled the ruling elite to strengthen the state institutions and to stabilize Russia’s political and social system after decades of instability. Relying on the new economic opportunities contributed to the growth of revenues of the mass sections of population, and owing to the increased export of natural fuel resources Russia significantly strengthened its influence on international politics. But on the other hand, authoritarian tendencies increased in politics. The contributions of this book inquire into the gradually declining role of independent actors in relation to the government, and the increasing authority of the elites in power who continue to represent their corporate interests as being national ones.


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Grigory Yavlinsky - Anticipating the Crisis: Russian Economic Prospects - 11


Grigory Yavlinsky Anticipating the Crisis: Russian Economic Prospects When estimating Russia’s current economic prospects, the majority of today’s economists are brimming with optimism. Over the next several years their predictions include GDP growth rates of seven to eight percent, a continuing consumer boom, growing industrial investment and economic diversification, all combined with a fur- ther decrease in inflation and a stable public financial system. Even considerable drops in oil prices and commodities production are not seen as substantial detriments. Despite a swift decline in Russia’s trade surplus and currency reserves, the rouble will maintain its long-term stability and grow stronger against the majority of the world’s currencies. All of this, happening under politically stable conditions, will further improve Russia’s investment climate, pro- moting foreign capital inflow and thus supporting high rates of economic growth. Furthermore, in this dream world, the tendency of Russian big companies towards globalisation will work to the advantage of the Russian economy, offering ever more financial flows and administrative resources. Impressive, but Only Mildly … These promises of a rapid economic miracle are based on current achievements. But Russian economic success, though indisputable, is not as great as it might seem and, in our opinion, does not war- rant such optimism. Firstly, we should not be deluded by the high GDP growth rate. Statistics by nature can be deceptive, and when applied to something 12 Grigory Yavlinsky as lacking in diversity and transparency as the current Russian economy, that deceptive nature increases exponentially. We...

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