THE MARITIME EXECUTIVE | Strengthened commercial engagement between Russia and China on Arctic energy ventures is driving a notion that there’s a Sino-Russian alliance in the region. The reality is that mutual mistrust, centuries-old territorial tensions over the Russian Far East and hangovers from the Sino-Soviet split in the Cold War are all permanent features of the China–Russia relationship. They’ll continue to shape the strategic outlook, to an extent curtailing the two states’ ‘axis’ potential.
Moscow and Beijing have both learned that nations don’t have allies, or partners. Secure, successful states seek merely mutually beneficial relationships. That sentiment frames Sino-Russian engagement in the Russian Arctic.
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