China is prepared to strengthen its relationship with Russia on energy issues to ensure “international energy security,” as the G7 prepares to impose new measures on Kremlin-backed oil exports.
President Xi Jingping confirmed his intentions today at the Fourth China-Russia energy forum, covered by state broadcaster CCTV.
He said: “China is willing to work with Russia to forge a closer energy partnership, promote clean and green energy development and jointly maintain international energy security and the stability of industry supply chains.”
The latest meeting between the two trade partners comes as the G7 prepares to impose a price cap on Russian oil from next Monday, to slash the country’s war revenues.
It is the latest move from the West to put pressure on Russia, which has been ramping up sanctions on the country since it invaded Ukraine in February, with the Kremlin responding by squeezing gas supplies into Europe.
In response to the G7’s proposal to cap Russian oil prices, the Kremlin has promised to re-route supplies to countries that do not support the cap.
This includes both China and India, which have significantly increased oil purchases from Moscow this year.
Russia’s energy exports to China have increased 64 per cent in value this year, and 10 per cent in volume, according to Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak.
Russia wants to boost gas supplies to China and gas been discussing a possible “gas union” with Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan to support shipments between the three countries and to other energy buyers.
It would also welcome Chinese partners in the Ust-Luga energy project on the Baltic Sea, according to news agency Reuters.
The Kremlin reportedly sees potential in exporting liquefied natural gas (LNG) to China from the port.
This comes with Europe divesting from Russian supplies, with Europe chasing US and Middle East LNG deals to meet its needs over the coming winter.