First Advisor

Joshua Eastin

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in World Languages & Literatures: Russian and University Honors


World Languages and Literatures


Russia (Federation) -- Foreign relations -- China, China -- Foreign relations -- Russia (Federation)




Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Sino-Russian relations have gone through an extraordinary renaissance. This paper explores Russia's relationship with China, particularly in Central Asia, through a latticework of global, regional, and bilateral trends, identifying key areas of convergence as well as underlying stresses. Both powers share an uneasiness towards "outside influence" i.e. the U.S. and the EU and have made significant progress in economic trade and institutional development. The relationship, however, faces several factors that if not managed could inhibit future growth. Among potential inhibitors are a deep-rooted historical mistrust and concerns over an increasingly asymmetrical relationship in almost all vital categories for Russia, particularly energy and defense. In addition, while there has been progress in institutional development in Central Asia, there still remains distinct spheres of Russian and Chinese institutions. This paper concludes that although the Sino-Russia relationship has made significant gains in recent years, historical mistrust, diverging concepts of regional integration, compounded by growing concerns in Moscow about the asymmetrical nature of the relationship could inhibit future growth, especially if those weaknesses are effectively exploited by the Trump Administration to drive a wedge between both states.


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An undergraduate honors thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Bachelor of Arts in University Honors and Political Science and Russian

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