Valdai Club’s Sixth European Conference. Programme
Vienna, Austria
List of speakers

Programme of the European Conference of the Valdai Discussion Club

“All Together or Me First?

How the European Union and Russia see the Future of Multilateral Diplomacy” 

Vienna, May 21st, 2019

09:30 – 10:00  Registration of Participants

10:00 – 10:05  Opening of the Conference

  • Andrey Bystritskiy, Chairman of the Board of the Foundation for Development and Support of the Valdai Discussion Club

10:05 – 12:00  Panel session. Does Multilateral Diplomacy Have a Future? Views of Russia and the EU

Challenges to efficient multilateral cooperation in the modern world are so large-scale that many believe that this very model of interaction has finally collapsed. Egoism begins to dominate many spheres of international life. The “me first” principle first employed by the United States is becoming more widespread. Taking their cue from the United States, many countries begin to rely on unilateral measures instead of aspiring for a harmony of interests. And where it is declared as a goal, for example, in China’s international projects, an exacerbation of rivalry often takes place. Have we entered a new era of the “war of thrones” or is it just a new stage of turmoil, to be followed by a new model taking shape? And it is especially important – how much does such a change of international situation threaten to the strategic stability? Will the nuclear powers be able to adapt to the new situation the principals of mutual deterrence and strategic restraint, which ensured peace during the Cold War. What might this adaption look like and what role can Europe play?

Moderator: Fyodor Lukyanov, Research Director of the Foundation for Development and Support of the Valdai Discussion Club


  • Thomas Greminger, Secretary General of the OSCE

  • Alexander Grushko, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation

  • Lassina Zerbo, Executive Secretary of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization

  • Konstantin Kosachev, Chairman of the Federation Council’s Committee on International Affairs

  • Thomas Gomart, Director of French Institute of International Relations

  • Sergey Oznobischev, Head of Sector on Military-Political Analysis and Research Projects, IMEMO RAS

  • Mikhail Ulyanov, Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the International Organizations in Vienna

12:15 – 14:15  Session 1. Are Sanctions a New Global Regulator? Reducing the Collateral Damage of Economic Wars

The global economy is changing: protectionist trends are on the rise throughout the world, universal rules more and more often fall victim to selfish approaches and separate deals. Trade and economic wars (so-called sanctions) are becoming not only a method of political pressure, but also a way of transforming the economic reality in the interests of stronger actors. How will economic entities build their relations in an increasingly fragmented world? Are economic restrictions becoming the most efficient way of promoting one’s interests?

Moderator: Ivan Timofeev, Programme Director of the Valdai Discussion Club, Programme Director of the Russian Council of International Relations


  • Alexander Shokhin, President of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entepreneurs

  • Kancho Stoychev, President of Gallup International Association (GIA)

  • Reinhard Krumm, Head of Regional Office for Security and Peace in Europe, Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung

  • Christof Van Agt, Senior Energy Analyst, International Energy Forum

14:15 – 14:40  Media Q&A