The pivot to Asia has made recovery more sustainable, Maksim Oreshkin says
Western sanctions have forced Russia to restructure its economy and reorient towards rapidly developing markets in Asia, Kremlin adviser Maksim Oreshkin said at the Moscow Financial Forum on Thursday.
According to the official, the shift towards the "healthy part of the global economy" has allowed Russia's recovery to become more sustainable. The country can also meet its objectives in a variety of areas, from defense and security to technological advancement and educational development, he added.
"In fact, what we've done over the past year and a half is a very big structural reform. A structural reform that switched the Russian economy, its focus, from the sick part of the global economy towards the healthy one," Oreshkin stated.
He noted that the changes are ongoing and at certain points have been "painful," as the country was faced with multiple challenges all at once, including reorienting logistics systems and creating new payment mechanisms.
However, without sanctions and the changes they brought, Russia would now be worrying about the crises plaguing Western countries instead of looking forward to the benefits of working with fast-growing economies such as India and China, according to Oreshkin.
"If we stayed in the past, we'd be sitting around right now discussing Germany's recession and how bad it is for us. Or that America can't cope with its financial sector instability. It is far more important for us now that China's economy accelerated 6.5% in the second quarter and India's economy grew 7.8%," he argued.
Russia's gross domestic product shrank by 2.1% last year amid severe economic restrictions imposed by Western states, according to official statistics from Rosstat. However, by the end of 2023, the Finance Ministry expects the economy to grow by 2.5%.
Over the past year, Moscow has gradually strengthened trade ties with partners in Asia, Africa, and South America. Russia has become the largest oil supplier to India and China, and is now the top provider of gold to the UAE. Earlier this month, President Vladimir Putin said that the economy has completely recovered from last year's downturn, noting that GDP has already reached pre-sanctions levels.
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