The report has been prepared based on the series of research conducted in late 2016 – early 2017 and the situation analysis “Turn to the East: A new stage and agenda for co-operation”.
The current stage of Russia’s turn to the East was conceived in the latter half of the 2000s as a somewhat late response to Asia’s economic rise, which opened many new development opportunities for Russia, primarily its eastern regions. Building on this potential, parts of Russia to the east of the Urals and its Far East could become national development and growth drivers. This would be a marked shift from the past, when these territories were considered a burden inherited from the Russian Empire or served as a rear base in Russia’s standoff with the West and occasionally as a frontline in its rivalry with Japan or China.
Proceeding from its assessment of the current and future geoeconomic and geopolitical trends, and based on the initial results of its economic, political and moral turn to the East, Russia put forward the idea of shaping a new community in the form of a Greater Eurasian partnership. This idea was backed by the leaders of Russia and China, and became a bilateral initiative open to other countries.