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By Thomas Stephan Eder

​As China rises to international energy prestige, its kinfolk with different significant powers, together with Russia, are continuously renegotiated. strength figures prominently in either nations’ overseas coverage. an in depth research of chinese resources – educational debate 1997-2012 – confirms a collision of pursuits over relevant Asian reserves. whereas unanimous appeals to compromise render prior predictions of forthcoming war of words unconvincing, descriptions of Sino-Central Asian power relatives as “central to strength security”, and the categorical rejection of a Russian “sphere of influence”, additionally exclude a retreat. within the long-term, China will most probably substitute Russia because the dominant strength in crucial Asia’s power zone, inflicting the Kremlin to understand one other “encroachment”. the present idea of a “strategic partnership” will necessarily be challenged.​

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Extra resources for China-Russia Relations in Central Asia: Energy Policy, Beijing’s New Assertiveness and 21st Century Geopolitics

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42 2. Energy Policy and Major Energy Projects from 1991 to 2011 their long-term cost effectiveness. Suppliers should be more reliable than some in the Middle East and a direct connection to the Chinese market was considered an important geopolitical advantage. All that made Russia (Downs 2010:151; Kozyrev 2008:209; Marciacq 2009:128) as well as CA countries (Lang/Wang 2008:1781-1782; Wesner/Braun 2006:6) very interesting suppliers. Eighth, Moscow was empowered around 2000, both by lower input costs for energy producers – resulting from the Ruble’s devaluation – and a dramatic rise in energy prices (Wilson 2004:84).

23 The notions “the CA republics“ or “the CA states“ will be used in this book, for the five “Soviet Socialist Republics“ (SSRs) in CA that were part of the SU – Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan –, and their independent successor states. 1. The Dissolution of the Soviet Union and the End of Chinese Energy Autonomy 35 Kazakhstan, which holds about 20% of worldwide reserves – putting it second only to Australia (Kassenova 2010:222; Schmitz 2008:20). The political turn to the West and Russia’s economic demise resulted in Moscow’s general retreat from CA in the early Yeltsin years.

According to Stephen Blank, control over CA oil and gas, which are cheaper to extract than the Russian reserves, provide the RF with enough energy rents to sustain its anti-market system. High cost, poor infrastructure and a wasteful monopolistic system make hydrocarbon production in Russia less efficient and competitive. 44 Furthermore, 40 See also: Downs 2010:156; Ziegler 2009:139: China insists on a price for natural gas which is competitive with its low domestic coal prices. Gazprom on the other hand, wants to tie the price of gas to that of a basket of crude oil prices, like it does with its European customers.

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