Putin’s economic advisor: It’s Kiev’s fault that Ukraine is doomed, not mine


March 4, 2017 – Fort Russ – 

Alexander Tsyganov, Tsargrad – translated by J. Arnoldski –

The transfer of enterprises belonging to Ukrainian oligarchs in the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics to external management has been on the front pages of media. Moreover, the leadership of the People’s Republics has fueled the fire of this burning topic, for example when DPR leader Alexander Zakharchenko just recently stated that Donbass is declaring its own blockade of Ukraine, whose existence as a state he predicts will not exceed 60 days.

A less burning topic which has nevertheless drawn more attention from experts is how competently and effectively this transfer of enterprise management is proceeding. On the morning of March 1st, several voices were heard claiming that there was no real transfer and that Donetsk and Lugansk’s ultimatum was fake. However, already by the next day, these voices quieted down and Ukraine began estimating the prospects of another collapse of the hryvnia. And, as usual, it started looking for a culprit – as usual, Russia.

But as for the economy, who should be sought behind the scenes? That’s right! Sergey Glazev, an advisor to the Russian president. 

But Glazev denies this allegation: “The problem of existing property relations on the territories of the DPR and LPR is exclusively an internal question which is being decided, as far as I know, absolutely independently. I have long since been dealing with the Ukrainian question, but I have nothing whatsoever to do with formulating economic policies, property issues, or other questions,” Glazev explained  his relationship to the events in Donbass to Tsargrad.

“These people are dealing with everything independently,” he emphasized.

“As for my field of work,” Glazev explained, “it is limited to issues of Eurasian economic integration, which Ukraine has rejected. Ever since the coup d’etat took place in Ukraine and Nazis seized power, this topic fell out of the sphere of my work, and since 2014 I have had no relationship with the Ukrainian front nor have I worked with the LPR and DPR.”

Kiev has hurled accusations against this key Russian economist quite often. The more pathetic that the economic situation in Ukraine becomes, the more often they blame him.

Just recently, a man “calling himself” (Glazev’s words) the General Prosecutor of Ukraine, Lutsenko, accused Glazev of participating in organizing events in Crimea and South-Eastern Ukraine in early 2014 through phone conversations. Lutsenko claimed that Glazev’s phone records showed that he discussed the preparation of the Crimean referendum and the organization of riots in Donetsk, Odessa, and Kharkov. 

Glazev harshly responded: “I don’t comment on the ravings of Nazi criminals.”

In fact, Glazev has expressed his opinion on the state of the Ukrainian economy – but, as he stresses, only in the framework of the topic which he deals with, i.e., integration on the post-Soviet space. 

In particular, at a celebration dedicated to the 20th anniversary of the Institute for CIS Countries, Glazev said: “Many say that we are losing in terms of soft power. I would say that it is more complicated. We are losing in part of our post-Soviet space a hybrid war which is being waged against us, against Russia first and foremost. Our enemy lays down at night calmly, as they say, but unfortunate people who have fallen into his integration embrace have to sleep sometime.”

Glazev mentioned Ukraine in this context: “In fact, this is what we are seeing under the guise of ‘European integration’, the signing of an association agreement with the EU which is in fact a forced restructuring of Ukraine which is today essentially an occupied territory deprived of legitimate organs of power where the main acting figure is the American ambassador. In reality, the Ukrainian government and parliament have no real authority.”

He continued: “An absolutely shameful association agreement has been imposed on Ukraine under which the local government is deprived of any real sovereign functions in the sphere of trade and economic relations, and is compelled to just blindly follow the dictates of Brussels. But instead of executing directives in the political sphere, it simply opts for coercion. No one cares where Ukraine’s national interests lie.”

As for Donbass, Sergey Glazev has expressed rather skeptical opinions on the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics transfer of Ukrainian companies to external management. 

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“I do not believe that this measure is correct in current circumstances because maintaining profitable work will now be difficult. The violation of credit histories for enterprises will affect them in a not very good way. But overall, I believe that after the 2014 coup and the signing of the association agreement with the EU, Ukraine’s entire economy is controlled from Brussels. How the DPR and LPR will build relations with Kiev is their own, internal affair.”

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