Delyagin: America and EU are concerned about the existence of Russia


“Do you approve the damage to Russia from WTO?”

April 23, 2015

Mikhail Delyagin

Translated from Russian by Kristina Rus

Economist Mikhail Delyagin, the Director of Institute of Problems of Globalization talked about the concerns of the US and EU about Russia’s import substitution to 

US and EU expressed their concerns at the WTO about the policy of import substitution pursued by Russia, told RIA Novosti a source close to the negotiations. The claims were related to requirements for public procurement, which include the preferential use of Russian products. 

Is import substitution in Russia really gaining momentum? On what basis does the US and EU express their concern, did Russia violate any obligations to WTO? addressed these questions to the Director of the Institute of Globalization Problems, economist Mikhail Delyagin. 

– In fact, they express concern about the very existence of Russia. Sanctions against Russia were imposed every time after achieving peace agreements. The meaning of the sanctions was to inflict the maximum damage to Russia and to ensure the overthrow of President Putin. 

When this could not be achieved, they have expressed concern about everything. For example, that Russian aircraft had flown near the American spy plane or because Russia follows this or that economic policy, which is not approved by the Americans. 

But it really it’s all just concern about the fact that Russia still exists. 

With specific regard to the WTO, it is a result of an incorrect position of the Russian Federation. Sanctions were imposed against us, which are a direct and open violation of all the agreements of the WTO. And we continue to follow all agreements on our part. Actually Russia ought to immediately suspend all the WTO agreements in respect to all countries, which had imposed sanctions against it for the duration of these sanctions. And it is desirable to impose prohibitive tariffs against them. But since Russia is not making these simple steps, others wipe their feet on us. 

 The policy of import substitution, has no significant effect so far. The decline of industry has recovered. The situation in agriculture is questionable. Of course, there are some areas where the substitution has worked: pork, cheese industry, to a lesser extent, dairy. But these are not the most important industries. In macroeconomic terms, the effect from counter-sanctions, nor from import substitution has not reached special heights. I think, in this sense, the state could do more. 

And what Americans and Europeans are doing, there’s a Yiddish word: “chutzpa.” It translates as “super arrogance, which paralyzes the enemy, because he could not even imagine such arrogance “. This is just such a case.

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