The Ukraine crisis and the evolution of Russia’s geo-economy

QU Wenyi 1,2 SU Zhaorong2,3

(1.Research Center for the Economies and Politics of Transitional Countries, Liaoning University)
(2.School of International Economics and International Relations, Liaoning University)
(3.Nanchang Institute of Technology)

【Abstract】Due to the deterioration of relations with the West after the Ukraine crisis, Russia has shifted its focus of geo-economy to the East, a move that has been put into the spotlight. This article uses Russia’s foreign trade and foreign direct investment (FDI) data to investigate in detail the evolution of the country’s geopolitical economy and finds that the actual dependence of Russia on Europe so far has not changed significantly, especially in terms of energy and raw material exports, foreign investment, as well as imports of some key high-tech products. At the same time, however, the deterioration of its geopolitical relations with the West has actually accelerated the pace of the country’s geopolitical economy shifting to the East, especially in terms of import trade—the Asia-Pacific region has replaced Europe as Russia’s largest source of imports. China’s share in Russia’s foreign trade has predictably risen sharply, but its role in Russia’s external financing has been quite limited. The Asia-Pacific region, especially China, cannot completely replace the role of Europe in terms of capital and technology movement, which may be one of the reasons why some Russian scholars have questioned the country’s eastward shift strategy. But in a longer period of time, because of the shift of the global economic power to the Asia-Pacific region being an inevitable trend, the process of the eastward shift of Russia’s geoeconomic ties will be sustained and stable. In time, the fundamental shift of Russia’s geoeconomic ties to the Asia-Pacific will be irreversible.

【Keywords】 Ukraine crisis; geo-economy; Russia; eastward shift;


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This Article


CN: 11-3799/F

Vol , No. 02, Pages 123-141+7

March 2019


Article Outline


  • The geospatial evolution of Russia’s export trade
  • The geospatial evolution of Russia’s import trade
  • The evolution of Russia’s geographic space for attracting foreign investment
  • Conclusion
  • Footnote