Focusing upon the warming Sino-Russian relationship in general, this paper also examines in particular both countries interests in the Arctic region. The paper begins with a brief overview of the developing Sino-Russian relationship since the late 1980s. After discussing the blossoming of friendlier ties during the Putin-Xi era, it reviews some of the arguments and assumptions that scholars have held predicting either an ever closer relationship or an eventual rupture in those relations. The paper then analyzes both countries’ interests in the Arctic realm, using this case study as evidence supporting the view that the Sino-Russian relationship–despite its many difficulties–has been effectively managed in this arena for mutual benefit. As well, although it was not intended to be so, the sanctions regime imposed by America and her European allies has been a key driver in the closer Arctic relationship, in specific, and Sino-Russian relations, in general.
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