Remarks by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov during an open lecture on Russia’s current foreign policy, Moscow, 20 October 2014
Mr Nikonov, friends,
First of all, I'd like to thank you for the invitation, which I was very pleased to accept. It's in our interest to discuss in as much detail as possible the issues that directly affect the Russian people and the national development plans, as well as issues that concern the international situation and the future world order with representatives of various political forces, primarily, the leading party, United Russia.
In many ways, the current international situation is defined by the fact that the world is going through a transition period. We are dealing not just with the beginning of another historical stage, but, it would seem, with a change of eras. Such pivotal moments are usually characterised by a substantial increase in instability and unpredictability in international affairs, which is what we see today in individual regions and globally.
The realignment, or, I would even say, the deconcentration of the global balance of forces, is a hallmark of our time. Most clearly, this can be seen in the greater economic power and increasing political clout of the Asia-Pacific Region. These countries have largely assumed the role of a driver of global economic growth, a role which was traditionally performed by the United States,Western Europe and Japan. As we can see, China achieved the greatest success on this path and, according to the latest report issued by the International Monetary Fund, has for the first time become the world's largest economy in terms of purchasing power parity Based on the findings of the IMF experts, the seven largest so-called "emerging economies," including our country, outdid the seven industrialized Western countries in terms of combined GDP. That's a totally new picture of the world that does not fit into the centuries-old notion of Western dominance in the global economy, finance and politics.
The global financial and economic crisis acted as a catalyst for change, and drew a line under the reasoning about the global victory of the liberal capitalist model and the imperative need for everyone to fit that mold. The "end of history" proclaimed in the early 1990s failed to materialise. It became clear that the present stage of international relations can be described in terms of competition, not only in economics and finance, but also in values and development models.
To be continued...