Putin’s Geopolitical Agenda – Russia to Host Russia/Africa Summit

  • Russia has interests in mining diamonds in Namibia.
  • Russia currently has crude related projects in Angola.
  • Russia is also part of BRICS, which is the acronym coined for an association of five major emerging national economies, including South Africa.

This week Russia will host a Russia-Africa summit from October 23-24.  The purpose of the summit is to promote Russian initiatives in Africa. There are 54 countries on the African continent and 47 of the nations confirmed their attendance.  Russian’s official strategy pertaining to Africa will be unveiled at the summit.

The difference between the West and Russian interests in Africa is the West’s concern to fix mass migration from Africa and the massive flow of migrants into Western Europe. Russia’s strategy is to offer support for African nations and their leaders to maintain sovereignty and to avoid coups. Economic sovereignty is going to be one of the main topics at the upcoming summit. Russia is also interested in the integration of joint projects on the African continent.  The continuation of medical training for African doctors in Russia and memorandums of understanding on the academic exchange within research and development spheres, including defense sector contracts with Rostec.

The Soviet Union subsidized a myriad of African nations to promote communism. After the collapse of the Soviet Union the aide subsided. However, African nations owe billions and are indebted to Russia.  Putin’s geopolitical control ambitions resurrected Russian interests in Africa. In comparison to the Soviet Union’s contribution on the continent, the Kremlin is more dynamic in the implementation of strategic interests. One of the main geopolitical interests across the global scale is control of the African nations.

The African continent is one of the few still rich in natural resources. The downfall of the continent is constant coups and political struggles.  China is also heavily promoting its own interests in the continent. The process of decolonization had a definite impact in Africa, allowing African nations to have broader opportunities on the global market. However, France still collects unfair colonization taxes from certain African nations to this day.

Russia currently has crude related projects in Angola. The interests are divided into economic and political angles. Additionally, many African military personnel train in Russia, including one of the elite training facilities in Volsk, Russia.

Russia is also part of BRICS, which is the acronym coined for an association of five major emerging national economies: Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.

The summit’s agenda includes Russian interests in Sudan and Madagascar.

Namibia is especially interesting to Russia due to the mining of diamonds. Russian diamond production is dominated by ALROSA (RTS: ALRS) which is 58% owned by Russian national and regional governments. ALROSA leads the world in diamond mining by volume and is responsible for 30% of the global diamond mining.

African nations have a pattern of Western influence and support of their politicians to maintain regime stability, but in case of insubordination, a coup is staged. Also, bribery and corruption is a significant issue for the continent.

In conclusion, the summit is a clear indication of the Kremlin’s attempt to further geopolitical control of the African continent.

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Christina Kitova

I spent most of my professional life in finance, insurance risk management litigation.

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