Presidential Elections in Abkhazia: A Competition Beyond the Rule of Law

On 22 March extraordinary presidential elections will be held in Abkhazia, a de facto state recognized by Russia. The main candidates hardly argue about the support from Russia, but the campaign in two rounds will nevertheless be tough. Abkhazian politics is characterized by a very low level of state capacity and by being run by […]

The Transition Generation. Who Will Rule Russia after 2024?

At the turn of the millennium, there was the so-called “Year 2000 problem”. It was expected that computers would “go crazy” and that this would lead to a global economic and transport collapse. However, on 1 January 2000, it turned out that the world had remained the same. The “Year 2024 problem” is quite similar […]

Guter Selenskyj, schlechte Regierung?

Der ukrainische Präsident Wolodymyr Selenskyj bleibt auch 2020 durchaus beliebt. Die Regierung und das Parlament werden dagegen von den Ukrainern gehasst. Ein Alarmzeichen für Selenskyj, der allerdings wenig Konkurrenz aus dem nationalorientierten Lager zu befürchten hat. Er hat größere Probleme: den Machtkampf innerhalb seiner Partei und die Unlösbarkeit des Donbass-Krieges. Die Überraschungen sind in der […]

Post-Soviet Space 2020: Key Trends and Challenges

Due to the shifts within the global environment, including the come-back of the Middle East to the top agenda of great power politics alongside emergent controversies between major international players, the post-soviet space is down-grading in the hierarchy of political interests of non-regional players. As the global attention is mainly focused on other regions, the […]

Ukraine-2020: Little Can Be Said For Sure

The views expressed in the article are solely that of the author and may not represent that of MGIMO-University, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Russian government.   There are numerous uncertainties for the coming year. Will the local elections be held on time? Will the Minsk agreements still be relevant? Will the resolution […]

Ukrainian Political Trends in 2020

2020 is likely to become another challenging year for Ukraine. 2019, a politically turbulent year of two national elections is over; but the politics in the country is still highly unpredictable. State institutions remain weak. Radically new president and the parliament did not bring about significant changes in the ways politics operate. The rules of […]

Economic outlook for the Eurasian Economic Union until 2024

The views expressed in the article are solely that of the author and may not represent that of Skolkovo, the Higher School of Economics and IIASA.   In 2019 we celebrated the first five years of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU). To which extent the Union was able to increase the welfare of its citizens […]

Chinas Belt and Road Initiative – Europas geopolitische Herausforderung des 21. Jahrhunderts

„Wir wollen die Seidenstraßeninitiative vorantreiben, so dass die Menschen auf der ganzen Welt davon profitieren […]. Wir wollen eine Straße des Friedens schaffen.“ So die Botschaft von Chinas Präsidenten Xi Jinping in seiner Eröffnungsrede anlässlich des „One Belt, One Road Gipfels“ am 14. Mai 2017 in Peking an anwesenden Vertreter aus 110 Ländern, darunter 28 […]

Neutrality for Georgia: Concepts and Application

Neutrality has been declared obsolete many times in its long and layered history. Yet a close companion to wars and conflicts throughout documented human history, and an inherently flexible concept, it has also made many comebacks in varying forms and contexts. Neutral states respond to critical moments in their environment by pursuing reversible, rather than […]

Georgia’s Hypothetical Neutrality. A Regional Perspective

By its geographical nature, the South Caucasus is a transit region: a bridge connecting Central Asia with Europe, and the Middle East with Russia. Relatively small in territory and population, the region is surrounded by large countries – Iran, Turkey and Russia – and located between two seas. Geographically, it is meant to unite, not […]

South Caucasus in 2020

The international security architecture is undergoing tremendous transformations. The relative decline of the US influence, rising China, more confident Russia, turmoil in the Middle East, rift in transatlantic relations and growing populism are the key patterns of current international relations. These developments are influencing virtually all regions of the world. Changes are not circumventing South […]

Russia-Ukraine Relations 2020: Equation With Many Variables. A View from Russia

The forecast for the Ukraine is one of the most ungrateful tasks for a political expert. The quantity of variables in this equation is so high, that only artificial intellect with plenty of facts and figures uploaded will be able to solve it in the nearest future. The current situation in internal politics and overall […]

Russian Current Economic Situation and Outlook

In the second quarter of 2019, economic growth picked up to 0.9% year-on-year from 0.5% in the first quarter. This was to a large extent due to the basis effect: the second quarter of 2018 saw a moderation of government spending after the presidential elections held in April. Still, GDP growth in the first half […]

Did the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) create a common market for goods, services, capital and labor within the Union?

The views expressed in the article are solely that of the author and may not represent that of Skolkovo, the Higher School of Economics and IIASA.   Being first and foremost an economic integration bloc, arguably the Eurasian Economic Union’s (EAEU) most important aim is to create a single interior market for goods, service, capital […]

EU’s Deafening Silence to the State Capture and Growing Signs of Authoritarianism in Georgia

“I will finish you!” Giorgi Gakharia, the newly appointed Prime Minister of Georgia addressed the parliamentary opposition during his speech on September 6. This simple phrase at first glance describes the level of democracy in Georgia, a country which continues to be considered by the European Union as a success story and the front-runner of […]