Inteligencia y Seguridad Frente Externo En Profundidad Economia y Finanzas Transparencia
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Economía y Finanzas  
 
15/10/2008 | Russia - Moscow and the G-7

Stratfor Staff

As the G-7 meets in Washington on Oct. 10 to decide future strategy regarding the global economic crisis, the group – comprised of the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Japan, Italy France and Germany — is holding a private session with its former member that helped make up the G-8: Russia. Since Russia’s August war with Georgia, Russia has in essence become persona non grata among the G-7.

 

Now, Russian Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin has come to the table to hear what the G-7 has come up with to alleviate the global crisis. In actuality, the G-7 is most likely concerned that Russia is more likely to further devastate the system.

The Kremlin has been encouraging the Russian oligarchs to hold their foreign assets in sensitive locations. Considering the current credit crunch, simply moving those assets could cause great damage.

Russia is one of three countries — the other two being Saudi Arabia and China — that sits on a massive amount of cash that could actually influence the system. Unlike the other two, Russia has a large political agenda — namely, its resurgence — to guide what it is willing to do with that cash. Thus far the cash has been seen in order to stabilize and secure Russia domestically, but there are signs Russia is willing to use its cash abroad, as seen in Iceland, if it fits into Moscow’s political agenda — not out of the goodness of the global economic system, of course.

According to Stratfor sources, when Moscow and Reykjavik discussed a loan to aid the plummeting situation in Iceland, Russia put a demand on the table: nixing NATO membership for the former Soviet states of Georgia and Ukraine. Six of the G-7 members are also in NATO, and it is most likely that Russia has once again placed this order on the table. Russia’s most crucial concern at the moment is Ukraine, for it left Georgia broken after the August conflict. Kudrin, who has been under the tutelage of Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin in the past few months, has started to be transformed from simply a competent finance man to a Russian wheeler-dealer who can deliver the Kremlin’s threats and demands when need be.

Thus far, it is unclear what exactly the G-7 wants out of Russia, whether that might be help for the international system or if they know of Moscow’s plans to further spiral other countries out of control. (The G-7 might not even know what it wants from Moscow just yet). It is clear, however, what Russia will counter with to the club it was, until very recently, a member of.

Stratfor (Estados Unidos)

 


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