Russias Strategy in the African Direction: what has Changed Since the Russia-Africa Summit 2019?

DOI: 10.20542/0131-2227-2021-65-12-68-78
Institute for African Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences (IAS RAS), 30/1, Spiridonovka Str., Moscow, 123001, Russian Federation.
Institute for African Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences (IAS RAS), 30/1, Spiridonovka Str., Moscow, 123001, Russian Federation.

Received 02.09.2021.

Acknowledgments. The article was prepared within the project “Post-crisis world order: challenges and technologies, competition and cooperation” supported by the grant from Ministry of Science and Higher Education of the Russian Federation program for re- search projects in priority areas of scientific and technological development (Agreement no. 075-15-2020-783).

Abstract. More than two years have passed since the first Russia-Africa Summit and Economic Forum, which were successfully held in Sochi in October 2019. The very fact of holding an event of this magnitude testifies both to the historical “turn” of the Russian Federation towards the African continent, and to the unprecedented enthusiasm of the African side about the “return” of Russia to Africa. The task facing the organizers of the next Russia-Africa Summit is to consolidate and build on the success achieved in October 2019. Obviously, the second forum should not be a repetition of the first, but a qualitatively new step in the development of Russian-African relations, therefore, its meaningful content needs to be substantially enhanced and expanded. It is necessary to move from the formulation of goals and objectives of Russian policy in the African direction to the implementation of specific projects and the development of a mechanism and tools for mutually beneficial cooperation. It is vital to show the Africans exactly how Russia differs from other partners of the continent, and to highlight those areas of cooperation that can contribute to the implementation of the strategic development tasks of the Russian Federation and the African continent. The authors of the article posit, that the key link in our relations in the near future, which will be attractive for African countries and will contribute to the successful economic development of the Russian Federation, can be the development of bilateral opportunities for technological partnership, since it becomes for the interacting parties a driver for the development of their economies in the context of the fourth industrial revolution and an incentive to create new strategic alliances. In a post-pandemic world, the demand for Russian technologies in Africa can grow significantly, since Russia has high competencies in precisely those areas that are most in demand today on the African continent. The transfer of Russian technologies, as well as cooperation in the scientific field, are not only beneficial to Russia in terms of image, presenting Moscow as a force contributing to the advanced development of Africa and strengthening its economic sovereignty. It allows our country to form an army of its supporters in the states of the continent by solving the problem of overcoming technological backwardness and training qualified personnel who will master and promote specifically Russian technological solutions. In addition, Russia receives a vast “testing ground” for processing and improving its technologies, which are in demand by the fast-growing young African population, and a huge market for Russian high-tech goods and services, which is so necessary for many Russians, including regional, manufacturers who are ready to increase their production, but experience difficulties in marketing their produce.

Keywords: Russia, Africa, development strategies, cooperation, technology partnership


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For citation:
Abramova I., Fituni L. Russias Strategy in the African Direction: what has Changed Since the Russia-Africa Summit 2019?. World Eonomy and International Relations, 2021, vol. 65, no. 12, pp. 68-78.

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