Sanctions are ‘self harm’ – Glenn Diesen
Western sanctions on Russia have opened up new opportunities for the country to develop its economic links with the rest of the globe, accelerating the decline of the unipolar, American-led world order, political scientist Glenn Diesen told RT on Wednesday.
Speaking to RT at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF), Diesen declared that “a lot of the economic power in the world is now shifting.” Forums like the SPIEF “initially began with Russia trying to seek investments and economic cooperation with Western countries,” he continued. “Now [the SPIEF] is an instrument to reach out to the rest of the world.”
Thousands of delegates from more than 100 countries are expected to attend the forum, which runs from Wednesday to Saturday in a city once considered Russia’s gateway to the Western world. This year will see a significant number of guests come from Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East, St. Petersburg Governor Alexander Beglov stated on Tuesday.
“85% of the world’s population live in countries that have not joined the sanctions,” Diesen noted, adding that “the forum demonstrates how the world is changing.”
With Western investors shutting themselves out of the Russian market, new players are moving in to take their place. The Moscow Region alone is expected to sign investment agreements totaling more than 150 billion rubles ($1.8 billion) at the forum, creating more than 18,000 jobs in the fields of industry, agriculture, machine and aircraft manufacturing, logistics, and health care, Governor Andrey Vorobyov told reporters on Wednesday.
“Sanctions are an exercise in self-harm” for the West, Diesen told RT. “If you sanction Russia, you’re simply handing over a huge market to the rest of the world.”
“It’s not just adversaries” of the US who are seeking new partnerships, he continued. “The sanctions also go against friends and allies. Countries like India that get along with the US, might also be punished in future with secondary sanctions if they want to continue their connectivity with Russia.”
“Malaysia, Türkiye, they’re all threatened with punishment unless they toe the line,” Diesen said. “If you want a multipolar world, an independent foreign policy, you really need to diversify your economic connectivity, which is why you see many seeking to reduce their excessive dependence on the United States.”