With the election of a new Democratic president in the U.S., Washington and Moscow may sign a new strategic arms reduction deal as early as the summer of next year, a Russian analyst said on Thursday.

"[Barack] Obama supports sharp reductions in nuclear arsenals and I believe that Russia and the U.S. may sign in the summer or fall of 2009 a new treaty that would replace START-1, which expires in December 2009," Sergei Rogov, director of the Institute of the U.S. and Canada, told a news conference in RIA Novosti.

The effective Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START-1) was signed by the United States and the Soviet Union on July 31, 1991, five months before the U.S.S.R. collapsed.

Belarus, Kazakhstan and Ukraine have since disposed of all their nuclear weapons or transferred them to Russia, and the U.S. and Russia have reduced the number of delivery vehicles to 1,600 each, with no more than 6,000 warheads. The treaty is set to expire on December 5, 2009.

Rogov said, however, that the signing of a new nuclear disarmament deal would only be possible if Washington abandoned its plans to place elements of a U.S. missile shield in central Europe.

"I am certain you are familiar with the statements made by President Medvedev yesterday. I think that Russia has expressed its position clearly - we are ready to make new steps in the sphere of disarmament, but we are waiting for the U.S. to abandon its attempts to surround Russia with a missile defense ring," the analyst said.