China may supply components required for Russia’s defence industry following US and EU sanctions against Russia.
Although Russia does not buy many weapons from foreign sources it does procure a lot of electronic and mechanical components to be used in its weapons systems. It often sources components from specialist manufacturers in the US, EU and Israel.
China is a major producer of high-end mechanical and electronic components including dual use items. In fact, many western defence manufacturers themselves obtain components from China.
Izvestia newspaper cited sources close to Roscosmos, Russia’s Federal Space Agency as saying that “Russian aerospace and military-industrial enterprises will purchase electronic components worth several billion dollars from China.”
According to the Roscomos source: “[Russia does] work with the China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation (CASIC) … Its institutions have already offered us a few dozen items, representing a direct alternative to, or slight modifications of the elements [Russia] will no longer be able to acquire because of the sanctions introduced by the United States.” Currently, Russia’s extensive military and aerospace industries do not source their components in China.
“Over the next two, two-and-a-half years, until Russian manufacturers put the necessary space and military electronic components into production, plans call for the purchase of such items from China amounting to several billion dollars,” the source adds.
The sanctions have already pushed the two countries closer together. Earlier this year, the duo signed a $400 billion natural gas deal amid reports that Moscow complied to Beijing’s price demands in order to seal a 30-year deal.
Meanwhile, Andrei Ionin, chief analyst at GLONASS Union told The Diplomat, “establishing large-scale cooperation with Chinese manufacturers could become the first step toward forming a technology alliance involving BRICS member states.”
The US has been trying to get China to impose sanction against Russia for its involvement in the Ukrainian conflict but has declined.
According to an official representative of China's Foreign Ministry Khun Lei, “We hope that the sides will solve the existing issues by the means of dialogue and negotiation, and that economic and trade cooperation will not be paralyzed.”