Central Asian Rail Deal Allowing China To Bypass Russia, Expand Trade With Europe

For the last two decades, Moscow has counted on Beijing’s regular use of Russian railways to export Chinese goods to Europe. In turn, China’s reliance on Russian rail was based on the presumption that any substitute overland route via Central Asia would be hampered by the need for goods to be offloaded onto ships to […]

How Did We End Up Here?

Every day, all day long, we are bombarded with updates and analyses about COVID-19, a virus that has stopped our one and only planet from “turning.” The whole world is on lockdown and almost everything has been shut down: businesses, cultural centers, religious institutions, etc. In the early 80s, I was walking down a Paris […]

Doing business amid plague: Kremlin sends ventilators to U.S., while Russian regions lack such equipment

I believe everyone remembers the recent tirades by U.S. President Donald Trump about Russia sending “humanitarian aid” to America with lots very useful equipment. And when Donald Trump claimed it was humanitarian aid, I noted to myself that we should better wait for details about the actual nature of its cargo, bearing in mind the […]

Russia’s Discreet Satisfaction Over Georgia’s Anaklia Port Debacle

Since the collapse of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) in 1991, a perpetual high priority for the Russian Federation has been to maintain or extend Moscow’s influence over the other former Soviet republics as far as possible, particularly in the military sphere. This is especially notable in the Black Sea region, where post-Soviet […]

As Global Oil Market Gets Into Turmoil, Russian Currency Fall Intensifies, Frustrating Putin’s Ambitions

The rouble – the Russian national currency, is weakening more and more against the dollar and the euro as well as plummeting oil price as the exchange rate of the U.S. dollar has exceeded R75 for the first time since February 2016. The dollar exchange rate for “tomorrow” jumped R2.14 to R75.0950, and the single […]

Israel Adopts New Africa Policy Through UAE

On his visit to Uganda on Feb. 3, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met the head of Sudan’s Sovereign Council Abdel Fattah al-Burhan. This development indicates the emergence of a new approach in terms of Israel’s policies on the African continent. In the framework of this approach, Israel is now speaking through one or more […]

Global Rivalry For Africa Intensifies

Major global powers are, once again, competing for rich natural resources, market potential, and influence opportunities offered by the African continent. The continent bore witness to the imperial struggles of colonist countries and their efforts for gaining access to new markets and accumulating more resources following the industrial revolution during the first “scramble for Africa” […]

Belarus’s Role In East European Energy Geopolitics

Executive Summary The role Belarus plays in energy geopolitics is one of the most unusual in the world. While not a petroleum supplier, it sells refined oil products to many countries. And while not a natural gas producer, it delivers the fuel to numerous countries via pipelines built during Soviet times. Its unique situation stems […]

Construction Of TAPI – The Pipeline To Deliver More Than Gas – Wrapped Up In Mystery

The end of 2019 and the beginning of 2020 saw the launch of a number of large projects for the transportation of natural gas, namely, the Trans-Anatolian Gas Pipeline (TANAP), Power of Siberia and TurkStream. The Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline is in the final phase of construction. The demand for natural gas in the […]

INSTC Vs. BRI: The India-China Competition Over The Port Of Chabahar & Infrastructure In Asia

Introduction The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the central component of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) in South Asia, has been a source of significant attention and controversy (China Brief, January 12, 2018; China Brief, February 15). Parts of South Asia, the Middle East, Central Asia, and Europe, however, are also host to another ambitious […]