CAVAN HOGUE. Brexit and Russia.

There has been some speculation about how Brexit will affect Russia. Probably not a lot politically but we can only speculate about the economic effects.

No doubt the European Community will spend the next few years contemplating its navel and so be less focused on relations with Russia. The Europeans will be even less interested in Ukraine and this could be to Russia’s advantage but it could have a negative impact if this confusion leads to a stalling of efforts to reach a peaceful solution to the Ukrainian civil war. Russia would like a solution to be found so long as Russian interests were protected.

However, there is no suggestion that the UK plans to resign from NATO and it is NATO that Russia sees as the main threat to its security. NATO is seen to be dominated by the USA and the USA by neocons which may not be that far from the truth. If Europeans are preoccupied with their internal problems this could even lead to greater US domination of NATO. The stationing of US missiles on the Russian border is unlikely to be changed by anything the UK does.

It is too early to know how the Russian economy will be affected. There is much international panic about  what will happen to the world economy  but what will happen when things settled down remains to be seen. Obviously Russian oil and gas exports will be the major concern of the Russian Government.

Cavan Hogue is a former Australian Ambassador to USSR and Russia.

 

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