When COVID-19 Hits Home

I know from experience the toll the disease and renewed lockdown measures are taking in Russia.

In Russia, the country I call home, COVID-19 cases are increasing. The number of daily infections exceeds that of the first wave earlier this year, with Moscow leading all regions. The government has reintroduced some restrictions accordingly, including capping operational hours for restaurants, imposing capacity limits in movie theaters, implementing mandatory remote work for certain professions, and so on. But, notably, Russia can’t afford a total lockdown. Like all countries, Russia must maintain internal stability, but unlike most, it’s size and ethnic diversity make it extremely difficult to do so. Moscow carefully monitors potential hotbeds of insecurity more than most – the pandemic is no exception – and tries to eliminate them whether by carrot or stick. However, the state budget has yet to recover from the fall in oil prices earlier this year and the decreased demand from traditional energy export destinations. As the Russian people lose their jobs as business slows, the task of maintaining power and unity becomes even more difficult. The vaccine Russia claims to have developed has not been released. Testing continues, but the public remains skeptical; nearly 75 percent say they are not yet willing to be vaccinated. Until they are, the risk of […]

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Ekaterina Zolotova
Ekaterina Zolotova is an analyst for Geopolitical Futures. Prior to Geopolitical Futures, Ms. Zolotova participated in several research projects devoted to problems and prospects of Russia’s integration into the world economy. Ms. Zolotova has a specialist degree in international economic relations from Plekhanov Russian University of Economics. In addition, Ms. Zolotova studied international trade and international integration processes. Her thesis was on features of economic development of Venezuela. She speaks native Russian and is fluent in English.