Russo-Chinese cooperation and its impact on Brazil and the international scenario

The world political-economic system is undergoing significant changes, as new emerging actors, in addition to old ones who are resuming their political presence on the international stage, are redrawing the structure of this system once again, raising other poles of power. At the beginning of the 21st century, a China, after a few decades of internal economic reforms, supported by its domestic political stability, became the focus of this important shift and appears to be objectively inclined to promote a new alternative world economic center in Asia. To achieve this main objective, a diplomatic initiative, political and economic importance is extremely important to finance the New Silk Road, in addition to fostering broad collaboration between the countries that make up the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, establishing strategic partnerships with countries like the Russian Federation.

A “alternative” opened up countless possibilities for Russians who began to face, during all the Putin and Medvedev governments, significant opposition from Europeans and the United States. For example are the latest economic sanctions that have occurred in recent years and interference in the domestic affairs of strategic countries that are close, or border on Russian territory like Ukraine, Turkey, Uzbekistan and Georgia, in a clear attempt to expand NATO. A China, in its turn, also suffers threats on the Korean peninsula, where a conflict would have direct consequences for your regional political stability, as well as competition with the United States in the South Sea, the issue of Taiwan and regions that still have strong separatist appeal like Tibet and Xingjiang. These issues promote a strategic approach between Chinese and Russians, that aim together to balance the performance of Americans, especially in places around the globe that are important to your interests.

Thus, China also turned out to be a short-term alternative to the Russian economy with exports, imports and investments. It is important to remember that Russia is still in the process of reconstructing the chaotic situation left by Perestroika / The loudness of de Gorbatchiov, and Ieltsin's neoliberal shock therapy, great allies of the USA and Western Europe, in season, that in the course of the transformation to the market economy, over the years 1980 e 1990, made the country regress in -50% your economy, almost resulting in a total dismantling of the Russian state. For this reason, Russia had to face separatist wars and intense social depression.

The Russian economy was practically reduced by oil exports, gas, space and war technology, country's strengths, remnants of the Soviet period. Currently, economic diversification is one of the crucial objectives, since the country produces very little and is highly dependent on imports. Therefore, long-term strategic cooperation with China could bring financial investment, as well as joint venture initiatives, specifically in technological fields, scientific and production. Even Russia's Eurasian Economic Union (CENTURY), depends a lot on China, since Vladimir Putin himself said that the EEU could serve as an economic integration capable of aligning Berlin, Moscow and Beijing, creating a new trade route.

All of these initiatives also aim to lessen the influence of the United States in Europe, Middle East, Central Asia and Asia itself, geopolitical and economic regions of extreme importance for both countries, that the US has managed to expand its sphere of influence, favoring and controlling directly and indirectly governments contrary to the interests of Russians and Chinese. Like this, Russia being the only one capable of inciting a balance of power with the United States, with respect to the military field, and China acting as an economic competitor that directly threatens American bargaining power, they, together, can and aim to put an end to the unipolar world that was created after the end of the Soviet Union, whose center of power is in Washington.

It is no coincidence that China and Russia, are looking for an approximation of South America, a sphere of direct US influence. China has already become the region's main economic partner, and Russia tries to persuade South American partners that it can be an alternative military and political source for them. No brazil, China has already replaced the United States as the main trading and investment partner, being the largest importer of goods, Brazilian commodities and goods. The Chinese, beyond the economic partnership, seek to find new allies, in multilateral cooperation, in international organizations and forums. This is one of the reasons behind the existence of the BRICS group (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).

The construction of a new economic center in Asia can be attractive to many countries and regions like South America. Brazil can see this Sino-Russian strategic alliance as a great alternative to its South Atlantic trade route, which means more business and more cooperation, even in the political sphere. Even if Russians and Chinese seek in their partnership solutions to short-term problems, they can, over the decades, boost the alternative of a second and new center of political and economic power, balancing forces with the West for the first time, since the Soviet collapse.


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Journalist graduated from PUC-RS
International Policy Specialist - PUC-RS
Master in International Strategic Studies - UFRGS