Chinese leader Xi Jinping in Kazakhstan before summit with Putin

by | Sep 14, 2022 | World

Chinese president’s trip underlines the importance Beijing places on asserting its role as a regional leader amid tension with the US, Japan and India.Chinese President Xi Jinping has started his first foreign trip since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic more than two years ago with a stop in Kazakhstan, in advance of a summit in Uzbekistan with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, and other leaders of a Central Asian security group.
Xi was met on Wednesday at the airport tarmac in Nur-Sultan by President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev and an honour guard.
His trip underlined the importance China has placed on asserting its role as a regional leader amid tensions with the United States, Japan and India in the face of disputes about technology, security, human rights and territory.
Tokayev’s government said the two leaders would discuss energy and trade. Kazakhstan is a significant oil and gas producer that counts China as a leading customer.
On Thursday, Xi is due to fly to Samarkand in neighbouring Uzbekistan for a summit of the eight-nation Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).
China and Russia see the bloc as a counterweight to US alliances in East Asia. Xi and Putin plan to hold a one-on-one meeting on the sidelines of the summit and discuss the war in Ukraine, according to the Russian president’s foreign policy adviser Yuri Ushakov.
Other SCO governments include India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan and Tajikistan. Observers include Iran and Afghanistan.
Xi is promoting a “Global Security Initiative”, which was announce …

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