0 $
2,500 $
5,000 $
580 $
JUNE 2023

Russia’s Economy Performed Much Better Than The West Expected Despite Sanctions

Support SouthFront

Russia’s Economy Performed Much Better Than The West Expected Despite Sanctions

Illustrative Image

Russia became the most sanctioned country in 2022

Written by Ahmed Adel, Cairo-based geopolitics and political economy researcher

Russia became the most sanctioned country in the world in 2022. Despite experiencing a deluge of sanctions from Western powers, the results against Russia were grossly unexpected as the country not only survived, but Western economies are now in disarray instead.

Following the launch of the Russian military operation in Ukraine on February 24, the West imposed trade bans on most Russian exports, restricted international airspace, imposed sanctions on Russian banks, created difficulties in the shipping industry, and ensured the impossibility of using the SWIFT international payment system.

The most self-destructive sanction was imposed on the energy sector despite Russia being one of the main exporters of gas and oil in the whole world, especially for Europe. As every sensible expert predicted, the sanctions against Russian oil and gas led to an energy crisis in Europe, having a knock-on effect on energy prices, inflation, and the cost-of-living.

According to Castellum.AI, a compliance screening platform, prior to the start of the special military operation in Ukraine, Russia had 2,695 economic sanctions directed against individuals, entities, and different industries. Most of these sanctions were imposed due to Crimea’s reunification with Russia in 2014,marking another failed attempt to undermine the Russian economy.

However, after the start of the conflict in Ukraine, the US and its allies increased the sanctions. As of December 15,8,613 sanctions were against individuals, 1,658 against Russian entities, 92 against ports, and 14 in the aviation industry.With this, Russia became the most sanctioned country in the world in the West, with 13,072 imposed in total. This incredible amount means Russia surpasses Iran (4,069), Syria (2,644), North Korea (2,143), Belarus (1,172), Burma (787) and Venezuela (651).

Of the total number of imposed sanctions, the US obviously tops the list, with 2,778. This is followed by Canada (1,928), Switzerland (1,667), the UK (660), the EU(1,444), France (1,382), Australia (1,197) and Japan (962).

The West hopes to destroy the Russian economy through sanctions as a strategy to weaken its military. However, even Western media had to be grudgingly acknowledge that none of the negative forecasts have occurred.

According to The Economist, at the beginning of 2022, it was estimated that sanctions would reduce Russia’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by 10%. The White House, for their part, expected the contraction to be 15%. However, The Economist had to recalculate their estimation as the contraction was reduced to 2.5% for the last quarter of 2022.

The Financial Times predicted in the middle of the year a drop in the Russian GDP – somewhere between 3.5% and 5.5%. However, on December 29, the media outlet reported that Russia instead recorded a surplus.

The results achieved by the Russian economy even exceeded the estimates made by the Central Bank of Russia and the Ministry of Economic Development. At the start of the conflict, the Central Bank of Russia expected a contraction of 8% to 10% in the GDP, while the Ministry of Economic Development estimated a drop of 7.8%. Now, the Central Bank of Russia reported that the decrease was between 3% and 3.5%, and the Ministry stated that the GDP will drop by only 2.9%.

Russia is suffering from inflation, but it is miniscule in comparison to Europe. Although inflation was a growing problem in Europe in 2021, the lack of Russian energy has only worsened the crisis in 2022.

The recorded 10% inflation rate in Russia is miniscule in comparison to the hostile Baltic countries of Latvia, Estonia, and Lithuania, which reported inflation levels between 21% and 23%in November. Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Italy, Poland, Romania, andSlovakiareported inflation levels between 12% and 17%. Germany, the country most dependent on Russian energy, had an inflation level of 11.3%, while Austria, Belgium, Portugal Slovenia, and Sweden reported inflation rates between 10% and 11.2%. Cyprus, Finland, France, Greece, Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta, and Spain reported levels below 10%.

Meanwhile, the Foreign Affairs magazine published an article in the last week of 2022 which questioned whether “The End of the Age of Sanctions?” is coming as a diplomatic tool of coercion for the US. The American magazine pointed out that measures, such as local currency transactions, the creation of alternative payment systems to SWIFT, and the use of electronic currencies have diminished the effectiveness that Western economic sanctions once had.

Precisely, some of the measures that Russia made in 2022 to circumvent the sanctions was to trade its energy sources in local currencies and to prohibit the export of oil to countries that established a limit on the price per barrel.

In this way, Russia has not only survived the West’s ultra-aggressive economic attacks, but has in fact accelerated the de-Dollarisation of the global economy by creating alternative systems to SWIFT and using local currencies in transactions. At the same time, the West’s economy, especially in Europe, has plummeted much deeper than was ever considered. In fact, Europe has suffered even more than Russia.


Support SouthFront


Notify of
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

It doesn’t take rocket scientist to figure this out because Russia has the real production based economy and us has fake financial economy.

The Crunge

But no way the Russians outperformed Jens Holm in writing skills. No people on planet earth can do that.


Russia’s economy had a core ability to produce much of its own needed necessities, whereas the West’s economies can only produce about 50% of theirs. The Russian’s produce almost all of their military needs while the US outsources 50% of theirs, which includes needed materials that only Russian exports. Therefore, just to replace the military hardware sent to the Ukraine, the US will pay 200% more than before the sanctions and that is IF the suppliers can find sources other than Russia for many needed elements.


Yes they can produce ‘walonki’ or poor quality vodka. No doubt…

mike l hutchings

the law of unintended consequences created a self-inflicted wound. Putin out foxed the foxes


It is inevitable that the Western, evil, negative, false and criminal cliques are the losers. It is the result of their inferiority and bad luck. Wishing you a bad death.


The best way to punish West and America is the world to abstain from using dollars and Euro for transaction just like what Russia did.

Kev not Kiev

Simple fact… Russia isn’t paying off counterfiet loans from Rothschild, all the sanctioning governments are. Russia doesn’t have to buy elections, bribe media, pay off hospitals to kill patients on purpose, for profit, or pay corrupt politicians across the globe into Swiss bank accounts, Rothschild’s puppets do. Russia is acting like the only adult in the UN, thus the UN is dead, it’s a kindergarten echo chamber for pedo liars and WEF scum bags and it’s beneath the Russians to bother with it. Nuke every central bank across the globe to stop the great reset and reset the greatest fraud and terror ever inflicted on humanity: Rothschild!

Last edited 5 months ago by Kev not Kiev

what the western moron politicians don’t understand is that, Russia produces almost all major engineering products and for consumables it can buy those from China. The need to import from the west is very minimal. By 2025 the need for civilian aircraft from the west will end. Russia will have its own civilian aircrafts in the regional and narrow body segment.



Pro Russian Leftist

Sanctions backfire that easily? Damn


(1) Misleading: “However, after the start of the conflict in Ukraine”

The author means that the conflict began in 2022, but that isn’t true. It began in 2014, shortly after the West and collaborationist Ukrainians overthrew and replaced the old government of Ukraine. The conflict ebbed and flowed after then until 2022, when it intensified greatly. The Kievans, who had reneged on the Minsk agreements, intensified their attacks in the east in preparation for fresh massacres against Russian citizens of Ukraine, esp. in the Donbas. Then the RF reacted to that.

(2) “As of December 15,8,613 sanctions…”: Needs a space after15?

(3) “Russia became the most sanctioned country in the world in the West, with 13,072 imposed in total”: It’s not clear why this figure differs so much from 8,613 + 1,658 + 92 + 14 = 10,377

(4) “in the world in the West”: Russis is not part of the West. So what is this string of phrases supposed to mean?

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x