Russia, the EU and Eastern Partnership Countries: Four Scenarios

Andrey Makarychev

This working paper seeks to analyze the cumulative impacts of three factors – the constitutional change in Russia, the coronavirus pandemic and the drop of oil prices –that have drastically altered Russian domestic agenda and had some impact upon Moscow’s policies towards the EU and the so called “near abroad”. I will pay a particular attention to Eastern Partnership (EaP) countries as being heavily dependent on the state of relations between Moscow and Brussels and on changes in Russian domestic and foreign policy. I start this paper with a short general overview of the most recent literature of EU-Russia relationship, then discuss Russia’s domestic transformations from the viewpoint of legitimacy and sovereignty, and project these trends into the sphere of international politics, particularly in Eastern and Central Europe. I will conclude my analysis with four scenarios that reflect conceivable developments concerning Russia, the EU and EaP countries.