Vladimir Putin‘s war chest has been exponentially growing since the start of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine – especially from revenues garnered from energy exports. Though Russia’s state-owned energy giant Gazprom has been reducing gas flows to the European Union – its bigger client – prices have been soaring, allowing Russia to fund its war machine. However, political scientist Benjamin Morel says the West’s economic sanctions are getting in the way of Putin equipping his troops.
Pr Morel told French broadcaster CNews: “On the effectiveness of sanctions, on the effectiveness of sanctions, one must be more nuanced.
“Russia is richer than ever, but why?
“What is the purpose of money? Money is used to buy things.
“But nobody wants to sell you (Russia) something.”
Citing the aftermath of the Second World War, Pr Morel said Russia’s economy was booming whereas Europe’s had collapsed. Russia then turned to key allies such as India and China to sell oil, but the exports failed to match the amounts sent to the EU.
He said: “At the end of the Second World War, India and China buy oil. And so, Russia has currency.
“But to buy what? To buy what? Again, at the end of the Soviet Union, the Russians had plenty of money. They had plenty of roubles but the shops were empty.
“That’s what Russia is facing. And that’s the purpose of sanctions,” Pr Morel said.