The past achievements of Russia-China interaction became more prominent as the military-diplomatic crisis transitioned into the acute phase. These developments have revealed both the structural strength of their cooperation and the challenges they will have to deal with together.
The conflict has also outlined more clearly the limits of the negative impact which Russia and China’s adversaries can have on their economic relations. Russia and China are part of the global economy, and their foreign economic ties developed in conditions of Western domination. Therefore, their current interaction will be inevitably affected by the economic war being waged by the United States and its allies against Russia. The focal point is whether Russia and China and their companies will be able to expand their cooperation and maintain their role in the global economy under these circumstances.
The strategic partnership between Russia and China is not aimed at controlling the global economy and international politics. Its main goal is to guarantee their sovereignty and the possibility of stable development for all countries. Their partnership is not based on aggressive wars or the sabotage of international institutes. On the contrary, Russia and China have been consistently upholding the central role of the UN and international law and have been advocating the equality of all global political players and restraint in the use of military force. In other words, it is a new type of strategic partnership that is not aimed at preserving their monopoly positions, as the West is doing, but at creating a new type of relations between powers in the 21st century. Russia and China have unique experience of interaction in BRICS and the SCO, the communities without a dominant leader.
The real nature of Russia-China practical cooperation at the bilateral level has so far not been properly assessed. Russia and China and their companies have not yet created the mechanisms of interaction on more serious matters amid the constant Western pressure and sanctions. They are working together at the diplomatic level to protect their views at the UN and other international organisations. As the West adopted a harsher attitude towards Russia, China’s position became more stable and consistent. It rules out the possibility of any difference of opinion or even the lack of tactical coordination between Moscow and Beijing. The West seems to be aware of this.