Dr Nikolay Murashkin, Visiting Fellow, Griffith Asia Institute
This talk will examine the domestic and external drivers behind Russia's contemporary policies in the Asia Pacific, as well as their historical context, and will argue that the on-going "pivot to Asia" represents continuity with earlier diplomacy rather than a reactive short-term posture. In recent years, Russia has been actively bolstering its relations with the countries of the Asia Pacific. Known in the media as a "pivot to Asia", this foreign policy is often interpreted as a reaction to the drastic changes in the international security environment in 2014. The most well-known of these changes included, in particular, the sanctions imposed on Russia in the wake of the Ukrainian crisis, the signing of the jumbo US$400 billion natural gas deal between Russia and China, as well as subsequent Sino-Russian rapprochement, both bilaterally and within the Belt and Road Initiative. However, a closer look into the context suggests that Russia's 'pivoting' rapprochement with Asian countries has several precedents in its diplomatic history, whereas the latest version of this policy pre-dates the critical junctures of 2014, even though the external environment provided a major galvanising impact to the recent 'pivot'.
Dr Nikolay Murashkin is a Visiting Fellow at Griffith Asia Institute. He earned his PhD from the University of Cambridge focusing on Japanese foreign policy and infrastructure finance in the New Silk Road region. Prior to his academic career, Nikolay completed a Master's degree at Sciences Po Paris and has worked as an analyst in a London-based bank on commodity finance transactions in Central Asia and Eastern Europe. He has been a Japan Foundation Fellow at Waseda University, Tokyo. He has published in a number of peer-reviewed journals and was the winner of the 1st prize of the Japan Foundation for the best academic paper by a junior scholar.
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