Igor Khrestin, Bradford M. Freeman Managing Director of Global Policy at the Bush Institute, provides insight into Chinese President Xi Jinping’s recent three-day trip to Moscow, where he met with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Beijing is looking to strengthen its relationship with Russia and limit U.S. global interests, and Moscow is seeking continued economic support from China as the Kremlin moves into the second year of its unjustified war in Ukraine.
Read the complete transcript below.
Hello, everyone. You may have seen in the news that Chinese leader Xi Jinping is in Moscow today, and I want to talk to you about what that means for the relationship between those two countries, what it means for the war in Ukraine, and what it means for the United States.
The context for this visit is that Beijing is looking to shore up what it calls the “no limits” partnership with Russia, which was announced before the full-scale invasion of Ukraine began, and encompasses new economic partnerships and ways to essentially limit U.S. global influence, which is China’s primary goal.
For Moscow, this visit is very important because of Chinese leader support, in essence, of its war in Ukraine, including the economic relationship that’s strengthened since that war began, and the potential for Beijing to scale up its assistance to Russia, both economic and potentially in the defense sphere.
Xi Jinping, also this is the first visit for him since he was inaugurated for his third term. And it’s a very important signal that that first visit happens to be to Moscow, which Beijing views with importance, obviously great importance.
What does this mean for the United States? Well, it means that we really need to shore up our support for both Ukraine and Taiwan, these are two democracies that are fighting for their life, which is also something we recommend on our website, in our policy recommendations for 2023.
The second thing we need to do is to deepen our alliances with like-minded partners in Europe, in Japan, the Japanese leader, Kishida, that also happens to be in Ukraine today, in Kyiv, which is an important sign of support, and other like-minded partners.
And lastly, we need to send very clear signals to Beijing that if it deepens its support for Russia in its war in Ukraine, especially defensive, in the defensive sphere, then there’ll be economic consequences.
Thanks so much.