The 25th St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) begins today. The US will boycott the Forum in retaliation to Russia’s
The 25th St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) begins today. The US will boycott the Forum in retaliation to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
The US has urged companies and governments to join in on the boycott. Accordingly, leaders from France, Italy, and Germany plan to travel to Kyiv during the event. Though the number of foreign representatives in attendance will be a fraction compared to previous years, at least 115 countries are still expected to attend.
Panels will focus on green energy, food security, the media industry, and Russia’s relations with Asia. Several prominent recurring figures at SPIEF intend to keep a lower profile this year, for fear of becoming targets of Western sanctions. Sberbank PJSC, Russia’s largest lender, will play a substantially smaller role at the Forum after being sanctioned.
Though the World Bank predicts that Western sanctions may lead Moscow to experience its largest GDP collapse in 30 years and a two-year-long recession, Russian President Vladimir Putin stated that the country’s economy would not close itself off from the world. Putin will use the Forum to build Russia’s partnerships with China, India, and Middle Eastern countries to continue developing its economy in the face of Western sanctions.
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