Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Strategic Moment Between China And Russia Before G20 Summit

Strategic Moment: Why China's Xi Visited Russia Right Ahead of G20 Summit

On Tuesday, Chinese President Xi Jinping completed a two-day visit to Moscow at the invitation of Russian leader Vladimir Putin. The meeting, described by Putin as one of the most important events this year, took place ahead of the G20 summit in Hamburg.

The visit resulted in a number of important agreements on strengthening cooperation in various fields and discussed international issues, including the situation on the Korean Peninsula.
As a result of the talks, Putin and Xi issued a joint statement on developing Russian-Chinese partnership and strategic cooperation. Moscow and Beijing also approved the plan to implement the Friendship and Cooperation Agreement 2017-2020.

Xi called the bilateral ties between Russia and China a "strategic alliance" and said that this cooperation is the "historical choice" of our countries.
He voiced that it is a "win-win" cooperation, adding that the "China-Russia relations are experiencing their best time in history."
The results of the talks indicate the intention to develop the Russian-Chinese vector in a multipolar world, according to Yana Leksyutina, an expert in Chinese politics and associate professor at the St. Petersburg State University.

"The main feature of Russian-Chinese bilateral ties is a common strategic vision of the international situation, including the desired model of world order. Apparently, this visit indicated that both Moscow and Beijing wants the current global order to transform, including in political and economic terms. The joint statement was made ahead of the G20 summit which will focus on the economic agenda. This is why these talks are so important," Leksyutina told Sputnik China.

On Tuesday, the Russian and Chinese Foreign Ministries released a joint statement expressing concern over the situation on the Korean Peninsula. Moscow and Beijing called on Pyongyang to declare a moratorium on nuclear tests, while at the same time urging Washington and Seoul to refrain from holding joint drills.
Ma Yujun, director of the Center of Russian Studies at the Heilongjiang Academy of Social Sciences, emphasized the strategic significance of the fact that Russia and China reaffirmed a common vision of the global issues that will be on the G20 summit’s agenda in Hamburg.

"A joint statement on strengthening bilateral relations ahead of the G20 summit is strategically important. On the one hand, the geopolitical situation near China’s border changed in recent years. In particular, the US continues its pressure to deter China’s growing influence in the region. On the other hand, the geopolitical situation near Russia’s border has also changed. The West has been mounting political pressure over Moscow, including sanctions. In this context, cooperation serves the strategic interests of both Russia and China," Ma said.

He underscored that despite the fact that officially there is no alliance Moscow and China, the partnership between the two countries is an "example of a new type of relations between major powers."
"Russia and China wants to develop bilateral cooperation on a win-win basis. […] Although there is no alliance between the sides and none of the sides establishes alliances with other countries. Both Russia and China are against a unipolar world and against any provocations in the global arena," the expert concluded.

"So Much For China Working With Us": Trump Slams China On N.Korea Trade

As the G-20 meeting in Hamburg between Trump and Xi draws nearer, the US president appears eager to continue antagonizing his Chinese peer. 
On his way to Warsaw this morning, where he will stay briefly ahead of the G20 summit in Hamburg which begins on Friday, Trump tweeted his displeasure at US trade deals which had been signed before his tenure: “The United States made some of the worst Trade Deals in world history. Why should we continue these deals with countries that do not help us?”
Initially it was not exactly clear from that tweet alone which trade deals he has in mind, although Nafta has been at the forefront of many minds inside and outside the White House, while the precarious trade relationship between the US and China is well-known.

The United States made some of the worst Trade Deals in world history.Why should we continue these deals with countries that do not help us?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 5, 2017

Conveniently, in a subsequent tweet Trump did hint at the source of his displeasure in a following tweet, in which the President made it clear who he was referring to: "Trade between China and North Korea grew almost 40% in the first quarter. So much for China working with us - but we had to give it a try!"

Trade between China and North Korea grew almost 40% in the first quarter. So much for China working with us - but we had to give it a try!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 5, 2017

North Korea claimed earlier this week it launched its first intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). As reported on Sunday, Pyongyang claimed the long-range weapon could "reach anywhere in the world." 
Trump after the test said he hoped China would "put a heavy move" on North Korea and "end this nonsense once and for all!"
Trump has repeatedly called on China to help curtail the North Korean regime's missile tests and has threatened unilateral action as the launches have gone unabated. The president last month tweeted that China has tried to help the U.S. solve increased tensions with North Korea, but "it has not worked out." 
As Citi points out, "this does not bode well for the G20 Summit which begins this Friday and the bilateral meeting between China and the US on the sidelines. North Korea is back in focus after the country tested an ICBM missile on Tuesday which US Secretary of State Tillerson said represented "a new escalation of the threat."

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