An unpleasant surprise – Unpredictable Russia

Russia presented an unpleasant surprise to the United States, setting an example for the whole world

Russia presented the United States with a surprise that turned out to be very unpleasant for Washington. Moscow demonstrated to the world that de-dollarisation could be successful. This is stated in the material published on the Chinese Internet platform Sohu.

Recently, Argentina and Brazil announced their intention to create a single currency that will help these countries stimulate regional trade and reduce dependence on the dollar. In the future, it is planned to invite other Latin American countries to join the project. The new currency is likely to be called sur (southern).

According to the authors of Sohu, the implementation of this plan will allow the economic and financial power of the Latin American and Caribbean communities to take a big step forward.

Chinese experts believe that the decision of Argentina and Brazil is part of a wave of global de-dollarization. It reflects the general tendency of various regions around the world to oppose the hegemony of the US dollar.

Russia was the first to start working in this direction, which set an example for the rest of the world.

Today, Russia settles with many countries in national currencies or yuan. The active promotion of the Russian Federation of de-dollarization has achieved significant results.

A new benchmark for peace

“Russia is popularising bilateral settlements in local currencies to set a new benchmark for peace. The general trend of global de-dollarization is accelerating. From the Middle East to South Asia and Latin America. Many countries are working hard to make progress on this issue.

All this came as a big surprise to the United States. Washington thought that the priority of the dollar was indisputable. It did not expect that almost the whole world would follow Russia’s example.

“It is in this direction that initiatives are being taken, which were recently voiced, just the other day, about the need to think about creating our own currencies within the framework of BRICS, within the framework of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States. This will be discussed at the BRICS summit, which will be held in the Republic of South Africa at the end of August and to which a group of African countries are invited.

Sergey Lavrov stressed that self-respecting countries are well aware of what is at stake, TASS reports.

“They see the inability to negotiate the masters of the current international monetary and financial system and want to create their own mechanisms to ensure sustainable development, which will be protected from the dictates of the outside,” the head of the Russian Foreign Ministry emphasized.

Kazakhstan and Emirates – Joint Fleet

Kazakhstan and Emirates to create a joint fleet in the Caspian Sea

KazMunayGas (Kazakhstan) and Abu Dhabi Port (UAE) have signed a strategic partnership agreement. It cooperates in developing the marine fleet and coastal infrastructure in the Caspian and Black Seas.

The document was signed within the framework of the visit of the President of the Republic, Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, to the United Arab Emirates.

The parties will create a joint venture based on the Astana International Financial Center to provide marine services for oil and gas projects in the Caspian Sea.

Within the framework of the agreement, Kazakhstan and the UAE will create a merchant fleet to support offshore projects in the Caspian Sea (small-seated vessels of various types), as well as a tanker fleet with the development of alternative routes for the export of Kazakh oil (through the port of Aktau in the direction of Azerbaijan).

In addition, Kazakhstan and the Emirates will explore opportunities for the construction or acquisition of container ferries (transit from China to Europe along the Trans-Caspian route) and dry cargo vessels to participate in the transportation of goods on the North-South route (Russia-Iran).

The signed agreement on strategic partnership significantly contributes to the intensification of cooperation between the companies. As part of this agreement, a joint venture will be established. From this year, he will participate in investment projects in Kazakhstan. We think that we will effectively use the experience of Abu Dhabi Ports in the development of offshore oil and gas fields in Kazakhstan and the implementation of transport and logistics projects.

Magzum Myrzagaliyev, Chairman of the Board of JSC NC KazMunayGas

Abu Dhabi Ports Company (ADP)

Abu Dhabi Ports Company (ADP) is a port, industrial and logistics operator of the UAE, one of the largest holding companies in the region, whose portfolio includes large enterprises covering critical sectors of the diversified economy of the Arab monarchy in the Persian Gulf. ADP manages several clusters, including ports, industrial cities, free zones, shipping, logistics, and digital technologies.

Baku previously pointed out that modern geopolitical realities change the logistics map in Eurasian space and the directions of cargo flows. It was noted that the countries of Central Asia began to use the transit opportunities offered by Azerbaijan to ensure access to world markets.

Baku is trying to close the transit flows of strategic energy on itself, taking into account, as noted in Azerbaijan, a new geopolitical reality against the background of the ongoing armed conflict in Ukraine. Thus, Kazakhstan plans to use the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline as an “alternative” route – bypassing transit through the Caspian Pipeline Consortium system (CPC, connects the fields in the west of Kazakhstan with the port of Novorossiysk).

More news from Central Asia!

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Is Putin bringing Medvedev back and why?

Putin again introduces Medvedev into a big game

The new post of first deputy chairman of the Military-Industrial Commission, which will be taken by the deputy head of the Russian Security Council Dmitry Medvedev, allows him to join the main thing – the “arms race”, said Ilya Grashchenkov, president of the Center for Regional Policy Development.

His point of view, writes ” Politics Today “, the expert argued that the key for Russia now is the issue of transferring the country’s economy to a military footing.

“But not in the sense that “everything is for the front, everything is for victory,” but in the sense that it was weapons that became the missing element of the mosaic of success in import substitution. It turned out that a lot of things need to be created, so Medvedev’s involvement is a resource position,”

 – says Grashchenkov.

The expert agreed with the opinion that today Medvedev is “the number one successor.” Firstly, he noted, President Vladimir Putin himself feels that way. He has a special relationship with Medvedev. At one time Medvedev supported the “tandem castling”, giving power to Putin and taking the post of prime minister, which confirmed his negotiability.

Medvedev has experience as a president

“Secondly, Medvedev is a person with experience as a president. There are no others like him. Third, despite his poor ratings in the past, many remember Medvedev’s period from 2008 to 2012 as golden times, stability, wealth. It is possible that the ratings can be improved on this nostalgia, ”

 Grashchenkov said.

Recently Medvedev has taken a “hawkish position” on a number of issues. He also began to write rather harsh posts on social networks.

“Medvedev’s position remains very good, and the new position really returns him to the position of succession,”

New position

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on the creation of a new position – the first deputy chairman of the Military Industrial Commission. It will be occupied by Dmitry Medvedev. He since 2020 is also the Deputy Head of State in the Security Council. Medvedev will have the right to independently hold meetings of the commission in Putin’s absence. His duties will include the creation of councils and working groups that will consider issues within the competence of the body and prepare proposals for their solution.

This position appeared in Russia for the first time. The subject of the military-industrial complex is well known to the former president of the Russian Federation. On behalf of Putin, Medvedev already controlled the work of the military-industrial complex. It is including the production of military equipment and its supply to the troops. It was through the Security Council.

“The decree structures the work that was carried out by the control group of the Security Council under the leadership of Dmitry Medvedev. Control measures will be continued within the framework of the work of the Military-Industrial Commission,”

 Osipov explained.

This appointment of Medvedev caused controversy in the pool of experts. Some felt that the politician was never given a new job. They only transferred the old duties to another department. However, others point out that the dual status of the deputy president in the Security Council and the military-industrial complex is a “huge power resource”. It is allowing him to become the main candidate to succeed Putin in the run-up to the 2024 elections.

The leader of the ruling United Russia party

The former president still leads the ruling United Russia party and is one of Putin’s most trusted allies.

Another confirmation of this is Medvedev’s recent visit to Beijing. He met with Chinese President Xi Jinping, who traditionally conducts negotiations at the highest level. That is, with heads of state. This time the conversation was held between the leaders of the two political forces. That secured the special status of the Russian politician.

“You have to understand that, in addition to writing posts in Telegram, Dmitry Anatolyevich does a lot of work, which is not very advertised, but which is very important. In particular, recently they began to show its functionality to accompany the reconfiguration of the military-industrial complex,”

France & Germany – On the brink of a break

France and Germany are further moving away from each other

Relations between Germany and France are bursting at the seams. Recently, many contradictions have accumulated between countries. It will not be easy to overcome. Previously, the Berlin-Paris axis was considered the basis of the stability of the European Union. With the exit of the UK from the EU, the partnership between the two locomotives of the association has become even more significant. However, now states have more and more claims against each other. What would a division within the Franco-German family lead to?

Initially, Olaf Scholz, even before becoming chancellor, was considered the ideal candidate to strengthen the Berlin-Paris axis. He was personally acquainted with Emmanuel Macron. Scholz had long-standing ties with the French elites. In addition, he was considered the successor to the course of Angela Merkel. The French further respected him by the fact that, together with French Finance Minister Bruno Le Mer, he managed to lobby for the creation of an EU Economic Recovery Fund with an unprecedented budget.

Did not get along

As Politico wrote, German and French officials accuse each other of selfishness and hypocrisy. In Germany, they complained that they were unfairly reproached for the too-slow pace of arms deliveries to Kyiv, as well as for unilateral energy subsidies to German enterprises. The French are unhappy that the Germans do not consult with them on critical issues.

“Also, Macron is increasingly aware that Scholz and his team do not consider France a priority partner,” writes Bloomberg.

Scholz announced the resumption of the Economic Stabilization Fund, promising to pay €200 billion in energy subsidies to German companies and households. He did not warn Paris about this.

French officials have expressed concern that the German aid package will lead to an even greater economic split. In Paris, they advocated for Europe to agree on limiting gas prices. And not to issue additional assistance.

Defence disagreements

One of the main contradictions in relations between the countries was the defence policy of the European Union. The Future Combat Air System project is planned to develop sixth-generation jet fighters. These should replace the Spanish EF-16 Hornets, French Rafales and German Typhoons by 2040.

President Macron has long been the initiator of this project. He seeks to achieve as much independence from the United States as possible. However, Germany and other EU member states see this primarily as an attempt by French companies to strengthen their influence. Despite encouraging statements from French and German defence ministers, the countries are considering going it alone. If the project fails, French jet company Dassault Aviation SA will develop the fighter in-house, while Germany will likely rely on US imports.

Another stumbling block was the desire of the Germans to return to the MidCat pipeline project. It runs from the Iberian Peninsula to Northern Europe. Berlin, seeking to minimize dependence on Russian gas, is looking for alternative supply routes. However, they do not want to invest in the project in Paris, believing it will not pay off.

Macron’s ambitions

Problems in relations between Berlin and Paris are largely due to the ambitions of Macron. He wants to become the informal leader of the EU. For a long time, the German-French tandem was a “cautious hegemony” of Germany. Departure by Angela Merkel is changing it all.

Because many European companies are seriously considering moving to the United States, there are certain contradictions between Berlin and Paris. Previously, natural gas was supplied to France mainly from Germany. FRG has long been a European gas hub, primarily due to gas from the Russian Federation. The share of Russian fuel a year ago was about 34% in the total volume of gas supply. The explosive rise in prices and Germany’s refusal of Russian gas means, among other things, the blocking of the gas channel for France.

The position of the FRG concerning the gas partnership with Russia, like a boomerang, also hit the French energy industry. Meanwhile, in Germany, there is not enough electricity supply. Paris has already hinted that it will not be able to supply electricity to Berlin, although the country has many nuclear power plants that do not depend on gas supplies.

A return to the German-French tandem, which was during the reign of Angela Merkel, is hardly possible.

Turkish Stream operator’s license revoked

It is ahead of schedule due to EU sanctions. The Netherlands, in another colonial operation after Nicaragua, broke diplomatic relations with them

South Stream Transport: license revoked from Turkish Stream operator due to EU sanctions.

The restrictive measures of the European Union, which came into force on September 18, led to the early revocation of the export license from the Turkish Stream operator South Stream Transport BV

The authorities of the Netherlands sent official notification of this. It is clarified that restrictive measures prohibit the supply of goods to Russia and the provision of services. And, in particular technical assistance and maintenance.

“As a result of the introduction of new sanctions, on September 18, 2022, the export license of South Stream Transport BV, the operator of the Turkish Stream offshore gas pipeline, through which Russian gas is transported through the Black Sea to consumers in Turkey and European countries, was prematurely revoked”

However, the restrictions do not restrict the further transport of the gas. Based on this, the fuel supply of various industries and millions of households in Turkey and European countries will not be affected in the short and long term, the operator stressed.

The company has already applied for the renewal of the export license. It is awaiting a response from the Dutch authorities. South Stream Transport BV said that they have every legal basis to receive an exception under the current sanctions regulation of the European Union. This is explained by the fact that the gas transported via the Turkish Stream is subsequently delivered to European countries through national gas transmission systems. It is thereby helping to ensure their energy security.

Turkish Stream is an export pipeline consisting of two lines. One is designed to supply gas from Russia through the Black Sea to Turkey. The second is for the countries of Southern and Southeastern Europe. Its design capacity reaches 31.5 billion cubic meters annually. The operation of the gas pipeline began in January 2020.

Nicaragua broke relations with the Netherlands

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Nicaragua announced the immediate severance of diplomatic relations with the Netherlands in connection with the kingdom’s intervention in the country’s internal affairs

“Ministry of External Relations of the Government of Reconciliation and National Unity of Nicaragua, in connection with the consistent interventionist and neo-colonialist position of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, which has insulted and continues to insult Nicaraguan families with threats and the cancellation of public works such as hospitals in the communities of indigenous people informs the government of the Nederlands about our decision to terminate diplomatic relations immediately.

The constant attacks on the mission, contrary to diplomacy and violating the Vienna Convention, by this neo-colonial and pro-imperial government are forcing us to take this measure <…> We know the Empires and the Colonizers of the Earth, and nothing and no one can make us forget their crimes against humanity,” – Nicaragua’s foreign ministry said in a communiqué

The text of the statement distributed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Nicaragua

EU diplomatic mission also asked to leave

On Wednesday, local publications, citing sources, reported that the Nicaraguan Foreign Ministry verbally notified the head of the EU diplomatic mission in the country, Bettina Mushaidt, that her presence in the country was undesirable due to disrespect for the sovereignty of the country

Earlier, Hugo Rodriguez, a candidate for the post of Ambassador to the United States, did not receive a work permit in Nicaragua. At a congressional hearing in July, he called Nicaragua a rogue state, compared the current government to the Dominican dictatorship of the 1950s, and said he would “work with international partners to return to democracy, respect for human rights, and free political prisoners,” after which his candidacy was rejected.

The Netherlands’ position

Regrettably, Nicaragua has chosen to respond in this disproportionate way to a critical message about democracy and human rights. The Netherlands has a clear position about Nicaragua’s deterioration of democratic institutions and human rights violations. Still, it is always willing to engage in dialogue about these issues, which Ambassador Pirenne did again this week.

Nicaragua’s decision to break diplomatic ties with the Netherlands is not an isolated move. The EU ambassador was declared persona non grata earlier this week, and the newly appointed US ambassador has been barred from entering the country. Earlier this year, the apostolic nuncio was expelled from Nicaragua. Nicaragua’s response should be viewed in the light of the EU’s current position and the sanctions the bloc has imposed.

The Netherlands is in talks with other European countries about how they intend to respond to Nicaragua’s actions. Approximately one hundred Dutch nationals live in Nicaragua and the Minister of Foreign Affairs is monitoring their situation. If necessary, the travel advice for Nicaragua will be changed.

Bulgaria-Greece gas interconnector launched

The 182-kilometre-long gas interconnector between Bulgaria and Greece was put into operation today, the first of October 2022

President of Bulgaria Rumen Radev, Prime Minister of Greece Kyriakos Mitsotakis, President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, Prime Minister of Romania Nikolae Cuka and President of North Macedonia Stevo Pendarovski and President of Serbia, Aleksandar Vucic were present at the opening of the pipeline.

The pipeline will transport gas from Azerbaijan via the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP). And also from other sources via the planned liquefied natural gas terminal in Alexandroupolis in northern Greece.

It is worth mentioning that the US is in the process of establishing one of its major military and naval bases in Alexandroupolis. Is this coincidence? I doubt it. More about that you can read HERE.

The 182-kilometre gas pipeline, 151 kilometres in Bulgaria and 31 kilometres in Greece, stretches from the northeastern Greek city of Komotini to Stara Zagora in central Bulgaria.

The gas pipeline is starting to operate with three billion cubic meters of gas per year. And with prospects for an increase to five billion.

At the beginning of this year, with the support of the EU, Serbia started the construction of a 109 km-long gas interconnector with Bulgaria. It is between Niš and Dimitrovgrad, on the territory of Serbia. The work should be completed by September 2023. EU seems to be very keen to make Serbia more dependent on gas on itself than on Russia. Modern colonialism in action. Members of the EU surround Serbia.

Serbia is forced to participate and buy gas at higher price

With that gas pipeline, Serbia will be connected to the gas pipeline between Bulgaria and Greece. It will be able to supply gas from Azerbaijan or the LNG terminal (for liquefied natural gas) in Greece.

The Ministry of Energy of Serbia previously announced that country would agree on a capacity lease with Azerbaijan. It will have at least 1.4 billion cubic meters of gas available in 2023 if everything goes as planned.

The President of the Technical Government in Bulgaria, Galeb Donev, said it is a vital project for the two countries and the entire region. Also, for Europe to diversify the sources of gas supply. He is ignoring that both Nord Stream pipelines have been seriously damaged.

Taking into account the severe damage to the Nord Stream pipelines, right now EU is more dependent on the US for its gas supplies than it ever was on Russia. I doubt there is any better motive for the US to destroy Nord Streem than this.