Graduation Year

Fall 2010

Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


International Relations

Reader 1

Hilary Appel


It is necessary and desirable for Armenia to retain close relations with Russia in both the short and long term. However, recent concessions to Russia for good relations in the short term may have potentially harmful repercussions for Armenia in the future. These concessions have in part resulted in the Russian dominance in the economic sector, over-dependence on Russia for Armenia’s energy needs, and the perpetuation of Armenian submissiveness to Russian interests. Armenia should, therefore, maintain good relations with Russia while simultaneously securing long-term paths that focus on actual strategic partnership and not dependence. In short, Armenia should return to a foreign policy of complementarism, which was first enacted under the Republic of Armenia’s first president, Levon Ter-Petrossian. Complementarism stresses the importance of pursuing Armenia’s best interest through the adoption of balanced policies and through minimal involvement or identification within regional blocs. The leveraging of Armenia’s long-term interests for close relations with Russia is possibly best exemplified in the state of Armenia’s economy. Like many former Soviet republics, the collapse of entangled Soviet trading patterns and the legacy of its centrally-planned economy still have negative implications for Armenian industry and trade.