Although Beijing insists that its Belt and Road Initiative has no geopolitical motives, the project has been at the center of an increasing number of political controversies, foreign and domestic, writes the Financial Times in a Special Report, citing analyses from the Reconnecting Asia Project.
Browse our analysis section for news and articles on topics such as China's Belt and Road Initiative (OBOR), the Competing Visions of Japan, India, and other regional powers, and the stakes for U.S. policy.
Following their meeting at the 2018 Eastern Economic Forum, Chinese president Xi Jinping and Russian president Vladimir Putin affirmed their intention to link China's Belt and Road Initiative with the Russian-led Eurasian Economic Union.
China's "Ice Silk Road," which would create a shortcut between the Pacific Ocean and the Atlantic via the Arctic, could complicate relations with Russia as the two nations compete for influence in Central Asia, according to the Nikkei Asian Review.
As Arctic sea ice steadily shrinks and temperatures rise, Russia and China compete for control of newly accessible natural resources and transportation routes while cooperating to finance the development of resource extraction and transportation infrastructure.
The Japanese government has compiled infrastructure development scheme proposals for Vladivostok ahead of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's scheduled visit to Russia in May, Nikkei reports.
Russia has started shipments of LNG from the China-backed Yamal port project in Siberia.
Putin and Abe will meet at the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok on September 6-7, but several obstacles are likely to prevent a major breakthrough in infrastructure cooperation.