Living the ‘Chinese Dream’ in the ‘Russkiy Mir’: Central Asia between Sino-Russian Strategic Trilemmas?

  • Graeme P. Herd


China’s President Xi Jinping made his first foreign trip to Russia during 22–23 March 2013. In Moscow the two presidents signed a natural gas deal and further consolidated their strategic partnership, pledging to ‘support each other’s right to choose its own development and social and political systems and firmly support each other on issues involving the other side’s sovereignty, territorial integrity, security, and other core interests’ (Xinhua News Agency, 2013). President Xi Jinping demonstrated how far the partnership had developed by pledging to: ‘resolutely support each other in efforts to protect national sovereignty, security and development interests’ and ‘closely coordinate in international affairs’ while President Vladimir Putin responded accordingly — suggesting the formation of a new anti-American axis (Gelb & Simes, 2013; Lo, 2012). Through 2014 this partnership was strengthened. Russia’s oil exports to China are set to rise, following a May 2014 US$400 billion pact between the two countries that secures 38 billion cubic metres (bcm) a year of exports from eastern Siberia to Heilongjiang province in China for 30 years, starting in 2019 (Nye, 2015). At the November 2014 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation CEO Summit (APEC) in Beijing, Russia signed a ‘Memorandum of Understanding’ to supply CNPC with 30bcm/y from western Siberia to Xinjiang province.


Foreign Policy Silk Road Soft Power Strategic Partnership Xinhua News Agency 
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© Graeme P. Herd 2015

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  • Graeme P. Herd

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