On July 18, the Valdai Club hosted a presentation of the report titled “Russia and Africa: An Audit of Relations”, prepared especially for the Club’s Russia-Africa Conference, which will be held on July 25 in St. Petersburg. The conference will be the final synchronization of watches on the eve of the second Russia-Africa summit.
The first Russia-Africa summit laid the foundation for deepening cooperation and expanding Russia’s contacts with the countries of the continent. Over the past four years, the geopolitical landscape has completely changed. In the new conditions, Africa is becoming one of the most important priorities for Russian foreign policy and economic relations. As Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov noted, “Russia provides honest assistance to the countries of the continent in strengthening their sovereignty, and ensuring security and economic growth.” The general main task, according to the minister, “should be bringing Russian-African cooperation to the level of a strategic partnership.”
The new Valdai Club report, titled “Russia and Africa: An Audit of Relations” is dedicated to the analysis of relations since the 2019 summit. The authors set themselves the goal of assessing in detail how Russian-African relations have progressed in the political, economic, cultural and humanitarian spheres, and which areas of cooperation should be developed more actively.
Experts note that amid the new geopolitical conditions, Russia needs a competitive African strategy, as well as a roadmap for its implementation.
An important part of the report is devoted to comparing the format of Russia-Africa cooperation with those that other countries such as China, India, the United States and Turkey already have. The report highlights the objective pluses and minuses that Russia has in comparison with other countries, and provides recommendations on how to most effectively use its strengths and overcome weaknesses.
What could Russia’s African strategy look like? What is needed for its successful implementation? What is Moscow’s competitive advantage over other countries seeking to cooperate with the region? The authors of the report tried to answer these and other questions during the presentation.
Elena Kharitonova, Senior Research Fellow, Centre for Civilizational and Regional Studies, Institute for African Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences
Rasigan Maharajh, Director General, Institute for Economic Research in Innovation at Tswane Technical University (South Africa)
Israel Nyaburi Nyadera, Lecturer at Edgerton University (Kenya)
Dmitry Poletaev, Leading Researcher at the Institute of Economic Forecasting of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Director of Migration Research Centre
Working languages: Russian, English.