This unprecedented increase in Russian oil purchases accelerated particularly last month, making Russia China’s largest supplier, ahead of Saudi Arabia. The West has adopted unprecedented sanctions against Russia since the end of February in retaliation for its invasion of Ukraine. In particular, they have reduced their imports of hydrocarbons.

“China cannot compensate for the losses”

But for Robert Daly, China specialist at the American Kissinger Institute, Beijing alone will not be able to save the Russian economy. “China can help a little without violating the sanctions regime and it does what it can. It imports more hydrocarbons from Russia, but China cannot compensate for the losses. Russian exports to China are simply not sufficient to compensate for the losses of the European and American markets”, he explains at the microphone of Europe 1.

54% increase in purchases of Russian liquefied petroleum gas

But Moscow has little choice. It can only rely on Chinese power to escape total economic isolation. Enough to allow good business in Beijing, which would have negotiated friendly prices with Moscow. In addition to oil, China also increased its purchases of liquefied petroleum gas from Russia by 54%.

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