Russia is winning its war of attrition against aggressive U.S. sanctions policy. Diplomatically, Russia is winning on all fronts, finding positive solutions through its abundant energy reserves to open gaps in relationships t hat have been frozen in geopolitical amber for two generations. The latest balance of trade data from Rosstat tells the tale. Russia continues to run a massive trade surplus even though oil prices crashed in the fourth quarter and have only somewhat recovered. I’ve covered the surprising stability of the Russian ruble over the past six months given the volatility in oil prices in the past. That stability is key to the future of central Asia as well as eastern Europe. Putin is positioning Russia and the ruble as the glue which ties central Asia’s development together through the Eurasian Economic Union. So, it and Russia’s economy defying the best efforts of the U.S. to impede its growth is something to keep watch on.
This post originally appeared on SOTT.net