Washington: Russia is looking for a life line from other countries to try to cooperate with them to boost its economic prospects, the White House said today, amidst reports that Moscow is in talks with Saudi Arabia to cut oil production by five per cent to battle falling crude prices.
“I think it’s certainly an interesting indication from the Russians about how concerned they are about their economy,” the White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest told reporters at his daily news conference.
“The Russian economy over the last several years has been isolated because of their destabilising activities in Ukraine, that had a significant impact on their economy in the short term, but it’s also had an impact on the longer term economic projections,” he said.
The resultant sanctions by the western countries have been put in place around the same time that oil prices on the global market crashed and those two things have combined to have a pretty negative impact on the Russian economy and on the prospects for Russian economic growth, he observed.
“So, I think it’s notable that you see the Russians essentially looking for a life line from some other countries to try to cooperate with them to boost their economic prospects.
“I think it remains to be seen whether or not that they’ll be successful in doing that,” Earnest said.
“But I do think that this admission from the Russians is telegraphing the kind of economic weakness that they have, which for the last couple of years, they attempted to deny,” he said.
The US President Barack Obama, he said advocated for a policy that, over the long term, transitions the US to a low-carbon economy, Earnest said.
“In the meantime, we need to be making sure that we’re taking advantage in a safe way of the natural resources that we have in this country. The oil and gas production here in the US is at an all-time high,” he said.
“What is also at an all-time high is our production from clean air sources, like wind energy and solar energy. And what the president envisions is a longer term transition that will be good for the planet, but also capitalises on the economic opportunity that exists when it comes to solar and wind energy and energy efficiency and other technologies where US businesses and US workers can really benefit,” the White House Press Secretary said.