The sanctions against Russia are leading to disastrous consequences, according to the 21st Century Institute. The EU may well be forced to relax some of its sanctions.
A recent analysis by the Hungarian 21st Century Institute (XXI. Század Intézet) accuses the European Union of serving US geopolitical interests rather than representing its own. According to analyst András Biró, EU sanctions against Russia are counterproductive.
He noted that historical examples show that sanctions do not lead to regime change or democratic transition, and often do not even succeed in limiting the political ambitions of the sanctioned countries.
“The self-defeating disregard for the fundamentals of security of the supply-chain is leading, among other things, to high energy prices, rising inflation and living costs, and the nightmare of entire industries shutting down due to stagflation or acute gas shortages is no longer unthinkable,” he warned.
As an example, the analyst recalled that EU institutions have been floating the gas embargo plan for months, which has pushed up global gas prices even further because of market uncertainty.
According to the analyst, it is also not a sign of the success of the sanctions policy that German Economy Minister Robert Habeck has been warning for months that if Germany is unable to fill its gas storage facilities, industries dependent on gas will have to shut down in the country, which could lead to the closure of the chemical, paper and fertilizer, metal processing and refrigeration industries. Without Russian gas, Germany’s economy will not only sink into recession, but the drastic drop in living standards could even lead to mass anti-government protests.
Biró pointed out that the failure of the sanctions policy is demonstrated by the fact that the EU is forced to relax some of its sanctions to avert various disastrous outcomes for Europe. For example, the bloc has been forced to ease sanctions on Russian banks to prevent an escalation of the food crisis in Africa.
Biró wrote that while the EU is facing the disastrous outcomes due to its own sanctions policy, according to the latest research by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the Russian economy has contracted less than expected, mainly thanks to extra profits from high energy prices. Europe’s voluntary disengagement from Russian energy sources is also a geopolitical shift, as closer cooperation between members of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) grouping is emerging, with Turkey, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia recently signaling their intention to join the emerging alliance.
According to Biró, the West is unable to isolate Russia on the international stage through its sanctions policy, but is isolating itself.
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