View Full Version : Russia & Latin America: Competition in Washington's "Near Abroad"?

08-11-2009, 12:52 PM
UK Defence Academy, 7 Aug 09: Russia & Latin America: Competition in Washington's "Near Abroad"? (http://www.da.mod.uk/colleges/arag/document-listings/russian/09%2804%29MAS.pdf)

Key Findings

• Latin America is becoming a new focus for Russian foreign policy. Moscow cultivates Latin America as part of its strategy of encouraging the emergence of a multipolar international system in which US influence will be diminished both globally and in Latin America.

• Moscow wishes to expand its presence in Latin America in order to demonstrate that it can develop relationships with states in Washington’s “near abroad” as a counterpoise to the USA developing relationships with former Soviet states in Moscow’s “near abroad”. Moscow is likely to continue to expand its presence in Latin America. However it is highly unlikely to seek confrontation with the USA in this region.

• Latin America is an increasingly lucrative area for Russian arms exports. Venezuela is now a significant purchaser of Russian arms. Brazil and Argentina are also important potential customers. Although the current Russian leadership has stated that it is not seeking military bases in Latin America, the possibility of Russia developing military facilities in Venezuela over the long-term should not be ruled out. A partial revival of the military relationship with Cuba is also possible.

• Energy cooperation is an important aspect of the Russo-Latin American relationship, particularly with Venezuela. Gazprom and Lukoil are expanding their presence in the region. Gazprom is interested in pipeline projects with Venezuela.

• Moscow is interested in developing scientific and technological cooperation, particularly with BRIC partner Brazil, which it regards as a technological ally.