chapter  7
Kazakhstan’s Border Relations with China
ByStephen Blank
Pages 14

In 2004, Bobo Lo called the development of the relationship with China arguably the greatest Russian foreign policy success of the post-Soviet period. Beijing has less ambivalence about the final resolution of the Sino-Russian border, in part because Moscow is not as important to China as vice versa. The Treaty of Nerchinsk was subsequently confirmed and extended by the 1727 Treaty of Kyakhta that clarified the border and regulated and protected the caravans that traded Chinese tea for Russian furs. The Russian policy was unapologetically to push as hard and as far as they could, and then force the Chinese to accept the fait accompli. China wants Russian energy and raw materials; Russia may be uneasy about the long-term relationship but, in the meantime needs China's money, goods, and markets, and so cannot afford to engage in geopolitical competition with this rising power.