MOSCOW, August 10. /TASS/. The United States’ new tougher sanctions against Russia may entail a collapse of the US financial system and ultimately ‘bury’ economic growth both in the United States and globally, a Russian expert told TASS on Friday.
"The US dollar became a world currency thanks to an international agreement. If the United States acts in respect of Russia as it has been acting in respect of Iran, and Russia is not Iran, the pyramid of the American financial system may simply collapse, burying both economic growth in America and in the rest of the world. So, such actions may be fraught with a most severe economic crisis," said Alexander Kalinin, head of the Opora Rossii association of small and medium-sized businesses.
US may not venture on tougher sanctions
Kalinin said he hopes the United States would not venture on tougher anti-Russian sanctions having analyzed their possible impacts. In this event, in his words, Russia would not be forced to take response measures Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has warned of.
"The new sanctions have been announced by some notorious US congressmen. They seem not to see that we are living in a complicated, interdependent world and each action entails its counter-action. That is why the prime minister noted - ‘if they do impose.’ I hope these crazy ideas of some congressmen won’t be put into practice," the expert said.
Touching on the first round of the new sanctions schedule to come into effect on August 22, which envisage a ban on exports of electronic devices and dual-use components to Russia, Kalinin noted, "The first package is practically the same as the sanctions that are now in force. A third of such imports from US is classified. So, such a measure will basically tell on exports of high-technology equipment from the United States."
He doubted that any realistically-minded politician would ever venture on the second wave of sanctions that provides for a ban on direct air service from Russia to US cities and reducing bilateral trade to zero.
Businesses will find other partners
Russia’s financial system is strong enough to withstand the United States’ new anti-Russian sanctions, if they are ultimately imposed, and Russian businesses will find other partners, primarily in Latin American and Asia Pacific countries, according to Vice President of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Trade Maxim Fateyev.
However, in his words, economic measures Russia may take in response to the US’ new sanctions will be of local character as trade between the two countries is not very big. "Since the share of trade with the United States is currently very small in our global trade, our response measures against US companies will be painful but very local," he said.
He also said he doesn’t think the United States would ever venture to toughen the sanctions. "As a matter of fact, I don’t think there are no sober-minded analyst in the United States to weigh all the risks (stemming from the new anti-Russian sanctions)," he said, adding that in any case Russia must thoroughly analyze its possible counter-measures. In his words, much will depend on whether other Western countries join the United States’ possible sanctions or not.
"I cannot anticipate the areas to be covered by the counter-sanctions but I think they will probably cover the entire spectrum of cooperation with the countries that may join the sanctions," he said.
From sanctions to economic warfare
Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said earlier on Friday that possible tightening of the anti-Russian sanctions could be viewed as the declaration of an economic war, to which it will be necessary to respond by economic, political or other methods.