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Russian experts believe US-Chinese relations pose no threat

Moscow, 11 November: The American factor has no decisive influence on Russian-Chinese relations, nor does Russia regard US-Chinese cooperation as a threat, Russian experts believe.

"The American factor is present in Russian-Chinese relations but it stays in the background," Professor Yuriy Dubinin from the Foreign Ministry's Moscow State Institute of International Relations said during a video linkup between Moscow and Beijing which was organized by RIA Novosti in the run-up to US President Barack Obama's visit to China on 15-18 November.

Dubinin said the importance of the American factor had grown since 1996 when Russia and China announced their intention to strengthen the world's multipolar structure; however the agendas of Russian-US and
Chinese-US relations are quite different. Dubinin also noted that Russian-US relations are still mainly focused on military, political and strategic problems, such as NATO's expansion, antimissile defence and strategic weapons reduction. At the same time, the Chinese-US dialogue mainly concerns economic issues, therefore it is difficult to find something in common in the trilateral relations, the expert said. The situation is gradually changing because China and the USA have started developing a military and political dialogue, Dubinin believes. He thinks that China, together with Russia, might join in the discussion of Obama's initiative to build a nuclear-free world.

Senior researcher from the Institute of the Far East of the Russian Academy of Sciences Andrey Davydov said that Russia "does not see the development of US-Chinese relations as a threat".

Commenting of existing theories of US-Chinese rapprochement, Davydov noted that people often mix up the ideas of Niall Ferguson about close US-Chinese economic cooperation (the so-called Chimerica) and the ideas of Henry Kissinger and Zbigniew Bzhezinsky about the formation of G2, a Chinese-US political alliance. Close economic cooperation between the USA and China is possible, whereas the idea of G2 has already been rejected by the Chinese and its implementation is practically impossible, Davydov said.

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