Ever since sanctions were imposed on Russia following its annexation of the Crimea in 2014 there has been constant speculation on when the US and EU sanctions will be lifted again.  There have been numerous surveys asking if there could be an easing in the upcoming 12 months. From time to time the number of analysts saying it was possible rose as high as believing there was a 40% chance that the EU sanctions at least could be eased in the next year. Lifting sanctions in the US is clearly going to be more difficult, but there too following the election of US president Donald Trump at the end of 2016 and start of 2017 the polls increased to 50-60 % of respondents saying at that time the USA could relax the sanctions imposed on Russia. But in reality the western sanctions regime remains unaltered and if anything continues to get harsher.

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