Russia, China: Predictable Relationship

Russia, China: Predictable Relationship

Russian President Putin is going to China. The news is like a gulp of fresh air in the suffocating atmosphere of Kiev with its burnt tires and repressions against dissidents. The tour is a positive step forward with bright prospects for future built on solid basis.

This is a turning point in history. Russia is being dragged by the West into another cold war and is subject to unprecedented pressure with clear intentions to subvert it. It’s not just a collision of interests – the system of values is undermined, the very right of people and states for self-determination is scorned…

The policy of Moscow is getting more support internationally among the countries who oppose the US claims for global hegemony. The interest towards forums and organizations led by Russia and China is growing, for instance BRICS and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) which have their summits slated for July and September.

The 4th Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA) Summit will be held in Shanghai, China from May 20 to 21. The theme of this year’s summit will be «increasing dialogue, mutual trust and collaboration to build a new Asia that is peaceful, stable and cooperative». It’s important to reach multilateral understanding of the fact that the emerging spread of nationalism around the world is a natural reaction to the collapse of westernization and a dangerous global challenge which is probably planned by the ideologists of the «clash of civilizations». The support of narrow minded Ukrainian particularism by cosmopolitan Europe fits well with this trend. Philosophers would call it cognitive dissonance, or an absurdity fatal for Europe itself.

China understands Russia perfectly well: the US-declared Asia pivot presupposes deterrence of China and dissemination of sinophobia in the neighboring states dragging them into military and political alliances led by America.

The recent impressive achievements of Russian foreign policy are appreciated in China along with the desire to help including countering all sorts of sanctions, another absurd move by the West. The aid is tangible: from point of view of industrial and financial might China can measure up to the US. As it has been reported, China’s GDP will catch up with the one of the United States by the end of 2014. China knows better how to achieve economic success than the masters of making people tighten belts and issuing paper assets with no back up.

The aid presupposes reciprocity (Chinese know how to trade and use partner’s weak points to their advantage). Beijing believes it has a unique chance to get access to Siberian riches. Moscow is ready to introduce new patterns of economic and scientific cooperation added by new achievements in developing cultural and humanitarian ties. Some kind of re-balancing to the East has become ripe since a long time ago. In Asia nobody stands in the way of doing business and launching long-term cooperation plans. It’s time to realize that large parts of Russian import from the West are repacked Chinese commodities. The elimination of go-betweens meets the mutual interests of Russia and China.

This time the Russian delegation is coming with a huge pack of cooperation documents (around 50) to be signed. New agreements have emerged in the recent months, while the talks of mutually important issues have intensified. There is another fundamental problem to be tackled. The visit would help to achieve progress here. The Chinese agencies face difficulty in finding counterparts in Russia. For instance, the China’s National Development and Reform Commission cannot find an interlocutor. There are other state bodies dealing in science and industry unable to make precise who to establish contacts with. The China People’s Bank has a Russian counterpart which is formally an independent entity, though it’s hard to say what this independence means and who exactly it is independent from. The list can go on. The legacy of tumultuous 1990s continues to negatively affect the prospects for cooperation between Russia and foreign partners.

These are removable obstacles. Economic dialogue cannot be artificially speeded up. It’s important to create a basis for cooperation – an infrastructure encompassing different spheres to serve the both parties well in the future.

The very rapprochement between Moscow and Beijing, the partners who know the real meaning of the simple word – friendship, opens up a fundamental alternative to effect positive changes in the contemporary world. Our countries can and should gradually turn the tide of world history making return the ideals that stated that aid to the weak and poor, as well as countering predators, is a right thing to do. During his recent Africa tour the Chinese Premier said «If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together».

Tags: CICA  Asia-Pacific