China and Russia are aligning their strategies to team up against the United States, according to a commentary by the Global Times, a tabloid under the auspices of the Communist Party mouthpiece People’s Daily. Following more than two decades of development, bilateral relations between China and Russia have reached a new phase, the July 18 commentary said, adding that China now considers Russia an irreplaceable partner for all its key strategies. These include the Silk Road Economic Belt, the land-based component of Beijing’s amibitious “Belt and Road” initiative to boost cooperation and connectivity in Eurasia; the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, the political, economic and military organisation the two countries founded along with Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan; and the BRICS association comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, as well as the group’s New Development Bank. 

During Chinese president Xi Jinping’s visit to Moscow in May, the two sides also signed off on a joint declaration detailing cooperation between the Silk Road Economic Belt and the Eurasian Economic Union, which comprises the Eurasian states of Russia, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. Beijing appears to be working hard to eliminate Moscow’s wariness and concerns to form a China-Russia “dual engine,” Global Times said, noting that there is still some tension stemming from the perceived competition between the Trans-Asian Railway supported by China and the Trans-Siberian Railway pushed by Russia, as well as the Central Asia–China gas pipeline from Central Asia to the northwest Chinese region of Xinjiang and the Altai gas pipeline from Russia’s Western Siberia to North-Western China. MORE