'US experience can promote activity of Azerbaijani lobby in Russia'

Mon 12 Sep 2011 03:06 GMT | 07:06 Local Time

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News.Az interviews Alexander Pavroz, Russian political scientist.

How do you assess lobbyism development in Russia?

I can say that the level of lobbyism development in Russia still remains low. It is also explained with the absence of the law, regulating lobbyist activity. All the same, the lobbying sphere is currently developing actively. Depart from this sphere, it is necessary to stress the activity of head of the head of the Center to Study Problems of Business and Power Interaction Pavel Alexandrovich Tolstykh, which actively promotes institutionalization and consolidation of the Russian lobby community.

Does Russia have professional lobby organizations by means of which other countries could ensure protection of their interests?

As far as I know, there are no such organizations. In the 1990’s, numerous legal and consulting agencies came to Russia. Among other tasks, these structures promote interests of foreign companies in the state bodies, through they do not position themselves as lobby firms directly. The informal ties between the governmental structures of foreign countries and these organizations are possible but I do not have any idea about the existence of open contacts of this kind or official contracts on representation of interests (though such relations are quite widely spread in world practice).

Are the CIS countries skillful in using their diaspora organizations in Russia?

There are very incompetent. In most cases, they lack understanding of the prospect of diaspora use to protect their interests. And even when there is such an understanding-the organization of this work should be recognized as unsatisfactory.

Azerbaijani diaspora in Russia is often accused of weakness, passiveness in participation in country’s political life. Do you agree with this assessment?

I agree with this assessment. But it is fair in relation to all CIS countries.

Which measures can Azerbaijani lobby in Russia take for their strengthening and further influence in political decision-making of the country?

The main problem lies in the absence of the coordinated organization which would direct and coordinate actions of the representatives of the diaspora, business and state structures in relations with the Russian state bodies. Such organizations which represent the interests of foreign countries with the use of influence of local diasporas are widely represented in the United States. Studying US experience of ethnic lobbyism can give key to raising effectiveness of Azerbaijani lobby in Russia.




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