While the European Union and the United States of America are introducing more and more anti-Russian sanctions, China has so far been very cautious about the situation. Although it might seem that they would clearly side with Russia.
However, the People’s Republic of China has quite serious reasons for its so far restrained approach to the Russia-Ukraine crisis. Although it is not obvious at first glance, Ukraine is a relatively important economic partner for China. This is both from a business perspective and from a capital flow perspective. Ukrainian-Chinese economic relations began to develop significantly in 2013 after the world’s most populous country was visited by then Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych.
The volume of trade between the two countries increased by 80 percent over the next six years to just under $19 billion. Ukraine mainly exports commodities such as iron ore, corn and sunflower oil to China, while the other direction is mainly machinery and consumer goods. China accounts for the largest volume of Ukrainian imports.
In addition, in 2020, the two countries signed an agreement to strengthen cooperation in various areas, particularly in the financial sector, construction and infrastructure projects. Chinese investment in Ukraine has reached several hundred million dollars.