Russia is among the nations to have contributed to the relief effort in China and its new president offered further support in a meeting with his Chinese counterpart in Beijing. But energy deals and diplomatic cooperation are the main business of the encounter between Dmitry Medvedev and Hu Jintao.
Moscow sees Beijing as a potential ally against a Western-dominated world order and oil could play a key role in that challenge. Russia has huge energy resources and China has equally vast demand and the two countries are keen to boost already burgeoning trade.
On a broader level the leaders were scheduled to sign a joint communique on international policy.
It will cover issues including Iran and North Korea’s nuclear programmes and opposition to the US’s plans for a missile defence system in eastern Europe.
Discussions on Central Asia, where both sides are seeking influence, were expected to prove more difficult.