Video On Demand

Four Years of Sanctions: Assessing the Impact on the Russian Economy and Foreign Policy

May 7, 2018 • 1:00 – 4:30 pm EDT

Featuring a Keynote Address by Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD)

Four years after the U.S. and EU first imposed sanctions against Russia in response to its annexation of Crimea in March 2014, how effective have these sanctions been in changing the regime’s behavior?  

In 2014, Russia experienced a deep recession as global energy prices precipitously dropped. But in 2018, the World Bank projects that Russia will experience GDP growth of around 1.7 percent and the Central Bank of Russia has effectively managed price stability. However, Russia is having to make painful budget choices and turning increasingly to China for infrastructure financing.

As Russia continues its military interventions in Eastern Ukraine and Syria, its malign influence operations across Europe and in the United States, and recently deployed a chemical weapon on NATO territory, it appears that four years of Western sanctions has not altered Russian behavior in its neighborhood and beyond. If anything, Russia has used Western sanctions as a domestic policy tool to nationalize industries while retaining access to the Western financial system. This half-day event will explore the effectiveness of sanctions against Russia and their impact on Russian foreign and security policy.

Please join the CSIS Simon Chair in Political Economy and the Europe Program on the afternoon of Monday, May 7 for two expert panel discussions exploring the impact of sanctions on the Russian economy and its foreign policy, followed by keynote remarks by Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD).

This event is part of the Simon Chair's Economic Statecraft Speaker Series, a forum to highlight the strategic role of economics in foreign policy and to explore the making of international economic policy. It is made possible by the generous support of Arconic Foundation.


12:30pm  Lunch Served

1:00pm  Panel One: Sanctions and the Russian Economy 

Sergey Aleksashenko
Nonresident Senior Fellow, Global Economy and Development, Brookings and Former Deputy Chairman of the Central Bank of Russia

Elizabeth Rosenberg
Senior Fellow and Director, Energy, Economics and Security Program, Center for a New American Security 

David Murray
Former Director of the Office of Illicit Finance, Treasury Department

Moderated by:
Matthew P. Goodman 
William E. Simon Chair in Political Economy and Senior Adviser for Asian Economics, CSIS

2:30pm  Panel Two: Sanctions and Russian Foreign Policy

Ambassador Kurt Volker 
U.S. Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations, Department of State 

Olga Oliker 
Senior Adviser and Director, Russia and Eurasia Program, CSIS

Moderated by:
Heather A. Conley 

Senior Vice President for Europe, Eurasia, and the Arctic; and Director, Europe Program, CSIS

3:45pm  Keynote Speech

Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) 

Senate Committee on Foreign Relations

Matthew P. Goodman

Matthew P. Goodman

Former Senior Vice President for Economics

Heather A. Conley

Olga Oliker