Irina D. Turgel


Sanctions have a long history, which spans over two thousand years. In fact, the first recorded cases of sanctions go as far back as ancient Greece. In the Middle Ages, such measures were formalized in legislation and were called repressalia. Under their current name, sanctions came to be known after World War I: the power to deploy sanctions was described in the League of Nations' Covenant. After the establishment of the United Nations, such measures were included into the Chapter VII of the UN Charter.

Traditionally, sanctions are seen as a foreign policy tool falling between diplomacy and military force and applied in response to the undesirable actions of a certain state. Unlike diplomatic intervention efforts, sanctions have a more pronounced economic effect and are seen as more likely to bring the desired change in the target state's behaviour on the international arena. Unlike military force, sanctions are a less costly alternative and they also carry less risk of further escalation of the conflict.

Lately, the topic of international sanctions has gained much urgency worldwide and has been actively discussed in the academic circles. The debates mostly centre around the impact of sanctions on the target's economy and their appropriateness as a foreign policy tool. There is, however, a perceived shortage of studies providing a comprehensive analysis of sanctions' impact on the regional, national and international levels as well as the specific tools of sanction policy and their effectiveness. More inquiry is needed into the challenges faced by target countries as well as the whole international community in relation to sanctions.

 The papers included in this special issue can be divided into three groups. The first group deals with the theory and methodology of sanctions studies. A.A.Pobedin in his paper 'Reconsidering Contemporary Classifications of Sanctions in the Light of the Russia Sanctions Regime' systematizes the approaches to the classification of international economic sanctions and proposes a qualitative model that can be used to examine specific sanctions regimes.

The second group of studies includes the papers analyzing specific sanctions episodes. Special attention is given to comparative analysis of sanctions in different countries. I.V.Lazanyuk and D.Mambu Diu investigate the development of the Angolan economy under the pressure of sanctions.  The authors focus on the role and mechanisms of the sanctions adopted by Western countries against Angola and some other African states. O.S.Sukharev and E.N.Voronchikhina compare the  development of Iran and Russia during their respective sanctions episodes by looking at the dynamics of each country's macro-indicators. L.L.Bozhko in her paper 'Challenges of Anti-Russia Sanctions for Metals and Mining Enterprises in Kazakhstan' considers the problem from the perspective of Kazakhstan, which is not targeted by sanctions but is nevertheless affected by them because of its close trade ties with Russia. The study aims to identify and describe the strategies and models of behaviour used by Kazakhstani companies to avoid the risks of secondary sanctions.

The third group comprises articles discussing the impact of sanctions on specific economic sectors and regions of Russia. I.S.Belik, N.V.Starodubets, A.I.Yachmeneva, and K.A. Prokopov estimate the potential losses incurred by Russian metal exporters due to the introduction of the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism in the EU and the sanctions pressure. S.A.Balashova and T.Musin analyze the problems and prospects of the Russian cloud computing market under sanctions. Since further dynamics of the market is surrounded with uncertainty related to the behaviour of the key drivers and the possible introduction of new sanctions, several scenarios are built for the development of the Russian cloud market and implementation of cloud technologies. E.A. Zakharchuk considers three scenarios of economic development of the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous District, the largest oil and gas region of Russia, under sanctions.  The article estimates the impact of the sanctions on specific areas of Yamal, especially the development of new hydrocarbon deposits in the Arctic. M.Y.Ilyushkina, A.V.Stepanov, G.N.Valiakhmetova, and A.S.Burnasov describe the tendencies and prospects of development of Russian industrial regions under sanctions. They focus on the case of Sverdlovsk region, which has a high concentration of mining and manufacturing (heavy engineering) enterprises.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.15826/recon.2022.8.3.015

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