"As G7 leaders were preparing for their recent summit in Japan, China’s
president Xi Jinping hosted his central Asian counterparts from Kazakhstan,
Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
Central Asia is critical to China’s attempts to build an alternative to the
US-led liberal order that is unquestionably dominated by Beijing and in which
Russia will, at best, be a junior partner.
In his opening address, Xi outlined his “vision of a China-central Asia
community with a shared future”. This will rest on four principles: mutual
assistance, common development, universal security and everlasting friendship.
While the relationship between China and central Asia is often framed in terms
of security and development, it also has a political side. This is all evident
in the initiatives to create more regional cooperation launched at the summit
These propose links between Chinese ministries and government agencies and
their counterparts in central Asia, increasing educational and cultural
exchanges, and creating mechanisms like the Central Asia–China Business
Council. All of these are likely to further consolidate of China’s dominant
In return, China will insulate the mostly authoritarian leaders of central Asia
from western economic and political pressure to move towards democracy and
protect their sovereignty and territorial integrity against any Russian
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics