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The rise of Asia - this is seriously and for a long time

The rise of Asia - this is seriously and for a long time


Member of the Presidium of the Council on Foreign and Defense Policy of the Russian Federation, political scientist, dean of the Faculty of World Economy and World Politics of the Higher School of Economics

Member of the Presidium of the Council on the current defense policy of the Russian Federation, political scientist, Dean of the Faculty of World Economy and World Politics NRU HSE Sergey Karaganov:

- The most fertile ground for fears is ignorance. In the past few years, we have finally realized that the rise of Asia is serious and lasting. Fears also increased that without a coherent development strategy, the country's eastern regions could fall under the dominance of China, which rushed forward. The fact is that an inadequate understanding of the Chinese demographic threat to the eastern regions of the country has strengthened in the public consciousness and still dominates. Although the Chinese are now in the East of Russia much less than there were in the Russian Empire (or the Germans in today's Russia). Another question is that it is necessary, if possible, to prevent the creation of large compact settlements of the Chinese in Russian territories, but a different logic works here, and not the fear of expansion and annexation.

In addition, any positive scenario we have taken to accompany a lot of "but". When it comes to programs for the development of the Far East, they constantly turn to unproductive arguments about low population density, unfavorable climate and labor shortages. All these obstacles must be taken into account. But none of them can not be considered insurmountable. In the same Canada and Australia, similar indicators of population density, and for cooling houses in Australia spend no less energy in the summer than heating in winter in Siberia. If it is reasonable to use local (highly qualitative) human capital and create conditions that people do not run to the center of the country and more and more abroad (by the way, mainly to Asia), it will be possible to solve most of the problems with the labor force. It is also possible to involve migrant workers on a temporary basis from Central Asia, India, Vietnam, Korea, and China.

One way or another, the main thing now is to form in Russia a philosophy and a strategy of turning to a new Asia through the development of Siberia and the Far East. In order to take advantage of the opportunities of international cooperation with the APR countries, to seek there not only because of military-political or defensive, but also because of economic interests. Unfortunately, so far only the outlines of the strategy and philosophy of development of the Far Eastern region have appeared. What can we talk about if there is not even a geographical definition for it! Speech is only about the Far East, sometimes in conjunction with the Baikal region. Meanwhile, the macroregion, which would be oriented to the new Asian growth and indeed, as a locomotive, could pull the whole of Russia along with it, should also include Siberia, connected with the Far East historically and infrastructurally. Siberia is able to provide eastern territories with high-quality human capital. It has a huge production potential, and the task is primarily to overcome the main curse - the world's strongest continentality, because of which the region has been divorced from world markets.

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