Prelims level : International Mains level : GS-II Governance, Social Justice and IR
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Why in News:

  • President Xi Jinping high-profile three-day state visit to the St. Petersburg consensus International Economic Forum last week include some panda diplomacy and underscore the strengthening Beijing-Moscow axis at a time when relations for both with the US continue to fray.

Background: / More in News

  • In St. Petersburg Mr Xi and Mr Putin emphasised that bilateral relations were at a historic high, marked by increased diplomatic and strategic cooperation.
  • Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping made it clear in St. Petersburg that the tensions with the West had only drawn them closer.
  • Russia’s annual investment gathering was boycotted by the U.S. Ambassador to Russia, Jon Huntsman. His absence was ascribed to the prevailing environment in Russia for foreign entrepreneurs, typified by the detention of U.S. private equity investor Michael Calvey on allegations of fraud.

China and Russia in Recent Time:

  • Trade between Russia and China grew almost 25 per cent last year, reaching $108 billion
  • —  finally  breaking  the  $100  billion  milestones  sought  for  years,  even  if  partly  based  on higher oil prices. In advance of the forum, Huawei signed a deal with MTS, Russia’s largest telecoms  operator,  to  develop  5G  technologies  and  launch  a  fifth-generation  network  in Russia.  The  deal  comes  as  Huawei,  one  of  China’s  most  important  companies,  is  at  the centre  of  an  escalating  trade  war  between  Beijing  and  Washington.  China  participated in Russian  military  exercises on  its eastern  border last  September, marking  a watershed. Moscow and Beijing have been adopting common positions at the UN Security Councilon critical international issues. Both sides have a keen interest in developing the Arctic, where Russia hopes Chinese money and demand will replace the West in developing oil and gas fields. Russia eventually expects that global warming will open up a competitive sea route to Asia through the Arctic, with China being a prime market.

Impact of China Russia Ties:

  • Chinese cooperation would prove critical for Russia’s elaborate plans to exploit the
  • Northern Sea Route along the Arctic as an alternative transportation hub. Give a boost to china’s Belt and Road initiative.


  • China’s  Belt  and  Road  initiative  will  overshadow  Russia’s  historical  control  over  Central Asia  since  Moscow  cannot  compete  economically.  But  it  hopes  China  will  continue  to accept a major Russian role in security for the region, once part of the Soviet Union. Russia and  China  share  a  common  goal  in  hoping  to  exclude  the  United  States.  St.  Petersburg International  Economic Forum. It  is an annual  Russian business  event  for the economic sector,  which  has  been  held  in  St.  Petersburg  since  1997,  and  under  the  auspices  of  the Russian President since 2005. The key purpose of the Forum is to provide a practical tool for  business, helping  to  overcome  the  barriers,  both  geographical  and  informational, dividing  Russia  and  other  countries.  The  Forum  brings  together  the  chief  executives  of major  Russian  and   international  companies,  heads   of   state,  political  leaders,  prime ministers, deputy prime ministers, departmental ministers, and governors.
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