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National Interests: Priorities and Security

Opportunities for using natural fresh water in Russia for the export potential development

Vol. 17, Iss. 4, APRIL 2021

Received: 18 March 2021

Received in revised form: 28 March 2021

Accepted: 7 April 2021

Available online: 15 April 2021


JEL Classification: Q21, Q25, Q27, Q28

Pages: 608–623


Aleksandr P. DEMIN Water Problems Institute of Russian Academy of Sciences (WPI RAS), Moscow, Russian Federation

ORCID id: not available

Subject. Water resources are getting more and more scarce worldwide, and the situation aggravates over time. In such circumstances, Russia should get use of its competitive advantages and increase exports of fresh water and water-intensive products.
Objectives. I analyze opportunities for using natural fresh water of Russia to unfold the export potential.
Methods. The study relies upon databases of the Russian governmental agencies, the UN, and Asian partnership countries. The study is based on the systems approach and methods of logic and comparative analysis, qualitative and quantitative analysis of statistical data.
Results. The article illustrates cases of water supply via canals and water pipelines from Russia to Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan. I display what unparalleled opportunities Russia has, since it possesses land and water resources, which would help rapidly increment water-intensive agricultural and other production. I make suggestions on key strands to follow and efforts to activate the use of available fresh water for the export potential development.
Conclusions and Relevance. The proposed rearrangement of some Russian river flows to neighboring countries should be thoroughly elaborated and studied in terms of environmental, socio-economic, political consequences. The rapid economic growth of neighboring Asian countries opens new opportunities for Russia to seize its competitive advantages. Hence, the government should actively support sectors that would meet the highest demand for their products in the coming decades. The competition is expected to intensify across all segments of bottled potable water market. Russia should get more involved into the sale of water not only on the Kamchatka peninsula, but only in other regions of Siberia and the Far East.

Keywords: shortage of water resources, competitive advantages, export potential, water-intensive products, drinking water


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