Is Sinocentrism putting Russia’s interests at risk?

Chinese President Xi Jinping at a wreath-laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Moscow during his visit to Russia in Marich 2013 —  first foreign destination after taking office. His talks with the Russian leadership included discussions on energy supplies. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Natasha Kuhrt, King’s College

Much has been made of Russia’s ‘sudden’ pivot to the Asia Pacific, but is it all much ado about nothing? In the context of the US rebalance to Asia and heightened rhetoric over Ukraine, the policy is not so much a pivot to the Asia Pacific as intensifying Sinocentrism in Russia’s Asia policy. Read more…

Warming Sino–Russian ties leave Japan in the cold


Authors: Andrei I. Kozinets, Far Eastern Federal University, and James D.J. Brown, Temple University

Russia has recently raised the priority given to East Asia in its foreign policy. This trend has further accelerated following the outbreak of the Ukraine crisis in 2014. But how is the policy progressing and what is its impact on Russia’s relations with China and Japan? Read more…

Why the West is wrong about Beijing and Kiev

Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russia's President Vladimir Putin walk together after the gala marking the 70th Anniversary of the Victory of Chinese People's Resistance against Japanese Aggression in Beijing on 3 September 2015. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Duan Xiaolin, NUS

The impact of the Ukraine crisis on the geopolitical order in Europe and beyond is clear. Although China is not directly involved, many Western observers believe that it is the biggest winner from the crisis. The argument is that Western sanctions mean Russia will move closer to China while the United States has to shift its attention back to Europe, thus moderating its rebalancing efforts to counter a rising China. Ultimately, the argument goes, this creates a new strategic opportunity for Beijing. Read more…

Time to tap Russia and China on North Korean denuclearisation

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un inspects a newly-built housing complex in Pyongyang in October 2014. China and Russia should pressure the North Korean regime on its nuclear program. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Akanksha Sharma, RSIS

Diplomatic engagements between North Korea and Russia have raised the prospect that denuclearisation talks between the Pyongyang regime and the international community will resume. Russian envoy Grigory Logvinov pronounced in June 2015 that Moscow would not support any ‘behind the back’ agreement regarding North Korea’s nuclear program, but it could still play a significant role in getting Pyongyang to address the issue on a bilateral basis. Read more…

Disparities limit the scope for a Sino–Russian strategic accord

Power bloc at the Beijing APEC summit in November 2014: Presidents Barack Obama and Xi Jinping in discussion, left while Peng Liyuan, wife of President Xi, engages Russia’s President Vladimir Putin. (Photo: AAP).

Authors: Tom Lairson, Rollins College and Ilan Alon, University of Agder

Does the geopolitical relationship between China and Russia portend a major shift in global relations? Many observers focus on the similarities in these nations as the basis for expectations of a deepening relationship. But, despite some commonalities, Russia and China are unlikely to develop more than a tactical and limited relationship. Read more…

China and Russia step up cooperation in Central Asia

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and foreign ministers from Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan talk before a meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow, 3 June 2015. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Uma Purushothaman, Observer Research Foundation

The growing Sino–Russian partnership is evidence that the Western policy of isolating Russia has failed. The policy has only served to push Russia deeper into Chinese arms. Russia and China are planning to increase their engagement in Central Asia and will coordinate their policies in the former Soviet territories in Eurasia. Read more…

Finding common ground in major-power politics

Although China and Russia seem to be moving towards closer relations, it would be unwise to believe in an inevitable or natural alliance between these two nations against the US. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Huiyun Feng, DIIS

2015 is an eventful year for major-power politics. The European Union (EU) and China just held their fifth round of strategic dialogue talks. Chinese President Xi Jinping visited Moscow to mark the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II. German Chancellor Angela Merkel just visited visit Moscow in early May. And the US–China Summit will be held in September in Washington. Read more…