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Tea trade between China and Russia



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UDC 39 Ts-55

Liu Zaiqi

doctor of historical sciences,

professor of the Ukhannsky state university of People's Republic of China, the head of the Center for studying Russia and Ukraine at Ukhannsky state the university ph. (928) 608-99-38

Tea trade between China and Russia

In article the value of the tea trade way beginning in Hankow and passing through Kyakhta to Russia and Europe which existed within nearly 200 years, up to the middle of the 20th century reveals. The aspiration to recreate a tourist route along an ancient way of tea trade in the 21st century is proved.

Most of modern people considers that in the ancient time there was only one trade way connecting China, Central Asia and Europe - the Silk way serving as the main channel of cultural exchange between China and the West. Very few people know that from the middle XVIII in beginning 20th centuries there was one more route going through steppes of northern China and Mongolia, and then through Siberia, and the connecting China with Europe. It is also the way of the Russian-Chinese tea trade forgotten nowadays at the time prospering which history contains more than 200 years. It began on the Yangtze River, in Hankow which was at the time of the empire of Qing the most important center of tea trade south of Yangtze.

400 years ago the Russian Cossacks approached borders of China

and, at last, established a direct connection between the Russian State and ancient Chinese empire which was continuously extending on the East. Throughout several centuries the Russian-Chinese relations by no means not always were peace, the periods of military collisions and tension were replaced by the periods of peaceful trade. In 1689. The Nerchinsk contract not only officially issued the Russian-Chinese border, but also laid the foundation for the Russian-Chinese trade. In 1728 the Manchurian government of the empire of Qing and the Russian Empire signed the Kyakhta treatise,

confirmed the line of frontier and created more favorable conditions for the Russian-Chinese trade. From now on the trade between two states which before was exclusively caravan began to turn gradually into border trade though trade caravans kept the value. Kyakhta - the small sandy hill on border of Russia and China - began to turn into steppe trade "capital" gradually. In Russia and Europe, deserts began to call this city "the Siberian Hamburg" and "Venice". In the 19th century, during blossoming of tea trade between Russia and tsinsky China, Kyakhta - "Venice deserts" - and far Hankow which was located on coast of Yangtze, in fact, were the cities brothers. 200 years of tea trade between Russia and China left us valuable historical experience.

1. History of the Chinese-Russian tea trade way

China is the homeland of tea. Export of the Chinese tea abroad began in the 16th century, and in the 17th century in Europe and in Russia there was already a developed market of the Chinese brick tea. In 1654 in Beijing there arrived the Russian ambassador Baykov who lived here half a year, and the tsinsky government took care of that to it and its embassy every day served tea Pu-erh. When Baykov held negotiations on trade between Russia and China, he bought tea leaves to bring them back to Russia. And in 1674 in Moscow there was already a trade in the Chinese tea. The Russian trade caravan which arrived in 1716 in China among other bought also tea leaves, and after a while tea turned into one of the official products bought by the Russian merchants in China. In 1764 the Russian merchant of Mylae noted in the records: "Tea - an indispensable product in our trade with China, we got used to the Chinese tea, and we will not be able to refuse this habit any more". By the end of the 18th century tea became widespread in Siberia. As for the European part of Russia, there it was drunk first by upper the population, but during the Russian-Turkish and Russian-French its wars began to distribute as well in army. In the 19th century there occurred blossoming of the Russian-Chinese tea trade, tea won first place among objects of the Chinese export to Russia, having pushed aside silk and cotton matters. For 1811 the export of tea to Russia made 80 Ltd companies of poods, for 1820 - more than 100,000, and trade in tea made 88% of the total amount of the Russian-Chinese trade for that time. "War and peace" contains in the novel by L.N. Tolstoy the description of a tea drinking during which have the Chinese tea Pu-erh. Tea Pu-erh was imported into Russia generally in the form of brick tea as so it was easier to be transported. Especially this tea became widespread in Siberia and among Tatars of the Volga region, it was possible to add to it

milk, cow oil, salt and other seasonings. Such popularity of tea among the nomadic and semi-nomadic people of Mongolia and Siberia, is explained by the main food to which serve meat and milk it. Among these people there was even a saying: "It is possible to live day without food, but it is impossible to live day without tea". The famous French writer Balzac in one of the works also eulogized the Chinese tea.

The fact that the tea which was on sale to Russia was grown up generally in the territory of the southern provinces of China deserves attention, and representatives of provinces in which tea was not produced, first of all, residents of the Province of Shanxi acted as dealers.

Here is how the Central plain and nomadic nationalities of the North of China in the "Notes about the County of Fenyan" made in the middle of the 19th century are described: "In Jin (territory of the modern Province of Shanxi) a frigid climate, and the earth poor. It is not enough animals, there is a lot of people, and the earth is not enough. Small harvests, there is not enough gaolyan, wheat, a millet, soy. Besides, everything that is necessary for everyday life, should be brought from strange lands". In these severe conditions intermediary trade between the North and the South became one of major activities for residents of Shanxi: they bought silk in Hangzhou, tea and sugar to Hankow, a lianovy cloth in Sichuan, cotton fabrics in Chzhikana. Thanks to the courage, abilities, ability to adapt to circumstances, fearlessness before risk, the dealers of the Province of Shanxi paved all new trade ways passing through all Celestial Empire. Among them there was a way from the southern China, down the river Han, through the territory of the Province of Shanxi, and then through Mongolia and Siberia to Moscow and St. Petersburg a tea trade route.

Every year merchants from Shanxi went far to the South to buy tea. They also invested money in construction of rooms for processing of tea in which by means of wooden and iron manual presses tea bricks were produced. Thus thousands and tens of thousands of peasants got every year a job on collecting and processing of tea that led to blossoming of craft in areas south of the Yangtze River. First merchants from Shanxi with big hunting bought tea from Mount U-i, the Province of Fujian, the tea market was located in the city of Syamey of the county of Chunan from where tea was delivered to the city of Hekou which was located in mountains of Qianshan. Then the waterway, down the river Xinjiang, to the lake Poyan, the Jiujiang River, tea was delivered to the transit point in Hankow. During rule of the tsinsky emperor Xianfeng, during the revolt of taypin, the way of tea trade for several years was blocked, and then resourceful merchants

began to buy more actively tea in the Provinces of Hubei and Hunan. Now tea after preliminary processing already in the form of bricks was brought in Hankow, and then down the river Cuhanshui - to Fancheng. From there on water and by land tea through the Provinces of Henan and Shanxi was taken to the Inner Mongolia, loaded there on camels and, having done a way more than in 1000 kilometers on deserts and steppes, reached Kyakhta. Then the Russian merchants brought tea through Irkutsk, the Urals, Tyumen to Moscow and St. Petersburg. At the time of the empire of Qing tea trade played a large role for economy of both states, contributed to the development of the tea industry and transport in China, to economic and social development of the northern steppe regions of China and the Russian Siberia. Along a route of tea trade caravans in the middle of the steppe the cities one by one grew, there was an interaction between the European and Chinese culture. In 1857 "The Russian-Chinese trade" Karl Marx wrote in the work: "The major goods which Chinese sell in Kyakhta is tea. Russians sell cotton fabrics and furs there. Before, the average annual volume of tea sales in Kyakhta did not exceed 100,000 boxes a year, but by 1852 it already reached 1,750,000 boxes, and the total price of goods exceeded 15,000,000 U.S. dollars. Thanks to trade growth, Kyakhta turned from an ordinary fair into one of enough large cities of Russia".

After the second opium war, according to conditions of the Beijing contract of 1861, Hankow turned into one of open ports. How England achieved for itself concession to a vkhanko, Russia, France, Germany and other states began to try to obtain the same. Russians, owing to the old commercial relations with China, understood Hankow value as tea market. In 1862 the representatives of Russia and the tsinsky government signed "The statute about overland trade between Russia and China". The Russian dealers acquired the right for purchase and processing of tea directly in chayeproizvodyashchy regions of the South of China and for delivery of tea to Tianjin by means of river transport. The Russian entrepreneurs arrived in Hankow and at once started hiring of people in the chayeproizvodyashchy Region of Yangloudong, the district Puin (modern Chibi), for processing of tea and production of tea bricks. From 1863 to 1873 in Yanlouduna three factories on processing of tea were constructed: Shunfeng, Xintai and Yichang. Competing with the English dealers overstating the price of tea leaves several times the Russian entrepreneurs carried out processing of tea directly on the place of its collecting, and then exported it in transit through Hankow. In 1874 three factories on processing of tea founded by Russians were transferred to Hankow, and one of them,

Shunfeng, settled down directly opposite to the English settlement. The Xintai factory was in the Region of Lanling, and Yichang - near the road going to Nanjing. In 1893 near the road going on Shanghai also the fourth factory - Baichang was constructed. Near the Shunfeng factory which was located on the bank of Yangtze the trade port, the first of three trade ports of Wuhan was built. Since 1874 the Russian entrepreneurs for production of tea bricks began to use steam-engines and water presses, and based by the Russian citizens of factory became the first modern enterprises of Wuhan and laid the foundation for industrial development of the city. The people employed on the Russian factories became the first industrial workers of Wuhan.

In 1861 from the port of Hankow 80 Ltd companies of tributes of tea were taken out (1 tribute = 50 kg.), in 1862 - 216 Ltd companies, and then export volume constantly increased. From 1871 to 1890 on average in a year more than 2 LLC LLC of tributes of tea were taken out. At this time in the world market tea the share of the Chinese tea made 86%, and a share of the tea which was taken out from Hankow - 60%. The trade ships a continuous stream entered the port of Hankow, and piers stretched more than for 15 kilometers, from the river Syankhe (Han) to Jiaji. Europeans called Hankow "the tea harbor".

During trade war between Russians and the English tea producers and dealers British got beaten and were forced to leave Hankow and to move to India and to Ceylon where they began to master the Indian market of black tea. The Russian entrepreneurs achieved practical monopoly in the tea Hankow market. The reason of success of the Russian dealers was that they possessed more thorough capital, commercial experience. Unlike the English entrepreneurs, they did not buy up finished goods directly from the Chinese warehouses, and founded own factories on processing of tea, buying tea leaves from peasants. Thanks to it the number of intermediaries decreased and the prime cost of tea was reduced. Besides, on the production the Russian entrepreneurs used advanced technologies therefore the quality of a product increased and the production efficiency increased. At last, use of new transport routes by them was the important cause of success of Russians. The traditional overland route of Hankow - Kyakhta replaced the new water route passing across the rivers and the sea. Across Yangtze the freight was delivered to Shanghai, from there by sea to Tianjin and further to Vladivostok. Later also sea way from Shanghai to Odessa was mastered. Thanks to development new

trade routes, it was succeeded to reduce cost of transport, and profit on trade increased. In process of growth of value of the sea transport the old overland route gradually fell into decay. In 1905, after completion of construction of the Trans-Siberian railroad, tea from Hankow and Yanlouduna began to be transported to the European Russia from Vladivostok by rail, and once prospering trade route of Hankow - Kyakhta finally lost value and became property of history. After the revolution of 1917, tea trade with Russia began to fall into decay, the Russian factories in Hankow were closed one by one, the Xintai factory was transferred to the English entrepreneurs and began to be called factory on production of brick Taypinjyan tea (Pacific Ocean). More than semicentennial history of the Russian monopoly in the tea Hankow market, and together with it and two-centuries history of the Chinese-Russian tea trade way came to the end.

2. Historical and political causes of the Chinese-Russian tea trade route

All know that the Manchurian tsinsky government pursued the policy of the closed doors extending both to southeast coastal areas, and to northern border. Foreign trade was strictly controlled. Since the 16th century as a result of formation and strengthening of the Russian multinational state and expansion of Russia on the East the Russians approached directly border of China, and in the 17th century the Manchurian government was forced to start establishing communications with the powerful northern neighbor. On the one hand, after accession of Siberia and the Far East to Russia constantly there was a process of resettlement of people of the European part of Russia to the Asian. The severe climate and a long distance complicated delivery of goods, and the Russian government willy-nilly had to import products, necessary for the population, from China. On the other hand, after accession to Russia of Siberia and Alaska, the tsinsky government needing precious bellows had to carry out their import from Russia. Despite this, the Manchurian government still reluctantly went for trade with foreigners therefore up to 1800 the Russian-Chinese border trade with the center experienced considerable difficulties and counteraction in Kyakhta and stayed in a condition of instability. According to the Chinese sources, for 1762-1800 the trade relations between Russia and China were interrupted 4 times, and according to the Russian sources - 14 times. Such instability brought the mass of inconveniences to the population of Siberia and the European part of Russia. Residents of Siberia and Distant

The East since ancient times bought fabrics in China, and the instability of political and trade relations between two countries threatened supply of the Chinese fabrics. As a result, residents of Siberia were forced in an adverse frigid climate "to start flax cultivation, and women - production of a cloth and fabrics" [1]. Besides, tea drink "turned into necessary requirement for Russians for a long time" [2, page 426], and as the main tea market for Russia served Kyakhta. As soon as the Russian-Chinese trade relations were once again broken offs, the population of Russia on huge space from Kyakhta to the Gulf of Finland was forced to buy tea in Western and northern Europe, in particular in England. As tea was not produced there but only it was processed, its price was extremely high. "For 1780 the pood of the tea imported from China cost in Russia 11 rubles, and from Western Europe - 52 rubles" [3, page 183]. The ordinary people needing tea during the periods of the termination of the Russian-Chinese trade had to pay for this product by 3-4 times high price. It caused general discontent. Moreover, as soon as the Kyakhta market was closed, the huge loss was sustained by all groups of the population connected with border trade: merchants, carriers, hunters, porters and others. It led to constant social instability in the border area of Russia. The termination of trade with China caused to the Russian side huge material damage. According to calculations of the Russian financial department, as a result of the termination of border trade the Russian treasury suffered annual damage at a rate of 600 Ltd companies of rubles of the tax revenue while the total amount of goods turnover in the territory of Siberia did not exceed 3 LLC LLC of rubles. It is possible to tell that the termination of trade in Kyakhta initiated by the Chinese side provided Russia the mass of harm and any benefits therefore the Russian government thought of the Kyakhta tea and other trade especially much. At the same time during an era of fierce fight for the Chinese Russia market aspired by recovery of traditional trade in Kyakhta to gain a foothold in the markets of northern China. At this time England, France, other European states and the USA tried in all possible ways to get on the Chinese market. In the conditions of active rivalry between Russia and England in the Far East in the 19th age of Russia it was just necessary to strengthen the retail chain stores in northern China and to develop transport in the territory of Siberia. As for China, for it trade with Russia through Kyakhta had not only economic and social value about which it was told above, but also and value political. After the second opium

the tsinsky government was forced to open wars for foreigners of Hankow and other ports to Yangtze therefore again the value of an old trade route of Hankow - Kyakhta increased. Besides, having faced in the middle of the 19th century aggression of the European powers, and then and Japan, the tsinsky government was forced to look for the help to Russia to counteract other European powers. The powerful organization of the merchants of northeast China interested in trade with Russia had the impact on the Chinese government. Therefore in the 19th century the Kyakhta trade entered a phase of stable development and reached the highest prosperity. From 1800 to 1824 the volume of bilateral trade increased each 5 years by 20-25% [4]. Such rates of development of trade suited both the Russian, and Chinese sides. At the same time Russian-Chinese trade had high potential of development. In the 30-40th of the 19th century the import of bellows from Russia, thanks to more favorable conditions, finally suppressed the English import of bellows to China. In 1839 1,219,189 furs from Russia were imported into China through Kyakhta while English fur through Guangzhou - only 820,925, i.e. only 67% of what was delivered through Russia. From here the importance of the Kyakhta market is visible to the Russian-Chinese trade. One of the Soviet researchers of the Russian-Chinese border trade notes: "In 30-its of the 19th century the Russian-Chinese trade through Kyakhta significantly increased. In 1829 the trade volume through Kyakhta was 29% of the total amount of export import in an Asian part of Russia, and in 1840 - already 42%" [5, page 50]. Further this researcher writes: "In the 40-50th of the 19th century the Russian-Chinese trade made 60% of the total amount of Asian trade of Russia. Also it should be noted that if before China bought generally Russian furs and cloth, then now the Chinese dealers began to buy also cotton fabrics. In the 1820th of purchase by the Chinese side of cotton fabrics of Russia made 2% of the volume of Asian export of Russia, in the 30th - already 18-20%, and in 40 - the 50th - more than 50%". Such is there was a situation on the eve of and right after the first opium war. It becomes clear why the Russian government forbade the citizens to commit smuggling of opium to China. At the same time the Golden Age was entered also by the Chinese-Russian tea trade [6]. It led not only to saturation of the Russian market this product, but also to development of market communications in Russia. On the eve of and after the Anglo-Chinese opium wars, traditional Russian-Chinese trade through Kyakhta in efforts of both parties endured the period of stable and healthy development. The Russian government especially sought for maintenance


a normal order of trade as it was "the trade, most favorable to Russia, to which, perhaps, trade in any other area could not be compared". At the end of XIX - the beginning of the 20th century export of the Chinese tea to Russia and Europe along a route of Hankow - Kyakhta reached higher level.

3. The valuable historical experience capable to enrich the content of the Russian-Chinese economic and cultural exchange

The Russian-Chinese tea trade way is a valuable historical heritage which needs to be studied and developed. Though during historical process this, within two centuries the prospering, trade way stopped the existence, it still represents for us the most valuable material on stories of the Russian-Chinese trade relations and also is an important source for tourism development.

The place where the Chinese-Russian tea trade way - Yangloudong - began is located in the territory of the city of Chibi of the Province of Hubei. There and now are tea plantations of tens of thousands hectares, and in the town the stone pavement on which the marks of wheels left by the carts which were taking out cargo of tea leaves from the city are visible nearby remained. Also steel manual presses for production of tea bricks and big scales for weighing of tea remained. At that time in the city there were about one hundred tea shops, and the population reached 40 Ltd companies of people. For washing of tea water of the river Guanyinquan and three more small small rivers was used, and names of many tea shops contained a hieroglyph "чуань" - "river": Changshengchuan, Jushengchuan, Sanyuchuan, etc. Today the tea factory Chzhaolitsyayu still continues to print this hieroglyph on tea bricks. In 10 kilometers from Yangloudong tea was loaded on river crafts, and its long way on the North began from here. Here still Min and Qing on whose parties wooden shops and benches are located remained paved a green stone of the street of eras. The street extends along the river on which the stone mooring for loading of tea on the ships remained to this day. From here brick tea on water was delivered to the lake Huangaykhu, and further down the river to Yangtze to Hankow.

Almost everything that is connected with Russians in Hankow, is at the same time connected also with tea trade. The only classical example of the Russian architecture in Hankow is the Orthodox church constructed in 1876 by the Russian tea dealer Pyotr and executed in traditions of the Byzantine architecture with a six-sided altar and round domes. In 1888 was built the building of the Russian tea factory Xintai which

located on Lanling Street in Hankow. In April, 1891 this building the successor of the Russian throne Nikolay Aleksandrovich (future Nicholas II, the last emperor of the Russian Empire) who was at that time On a visit visited. He participated in celebrations concerning the 25 anniversary of foundation of Xintai factory. Zhang Kyi-dun, being then the inspector of the Province of Huguang (modern Hubei and Hunay) gave in honor of the Russian successor a reception in the Qingchuan palace. In 1896 the Russian and tsinsky governments signed an agreement on the basis in Hankow of the Russian consulate, and in 1902 this consulate was created (it located at the address Hankow, Duntin-tsze Street, 75; now the building belongs to a film studio of the Province of Hubei). The Russian consulate represented a brick-wooden design, and the surface of a brick was inlaid, and platbands of windows are executed from especially strong breeds of a tree. Later in the territory of the Russian concession the building of police station located on Poyan-lu Street was also built. On Duntin-lu Street there is the well-known building known in Hankow as "a house of misters Oh". This triangular building in the plan was built in 1909 by owners of tea factory Xintai three brothers Bannov who spent for construction of 150 Ltd companies silver Liang. On Duntin-tsze Street Ivanov's mansion - the founder of the well-known tea plant Shunfeng was located. Now the building rents one of large bars of Hankow, but it still keeps the initial style, including the Dutch furnace in the living room remained. Opposite to "the house of misters Oh" the building of the Russian tea bank was located, now in this building the restaurant of Russian cuisine was located. Especially it is famous for the braised beef and borsch. They say that from 20 to the 50th the doors of restaurant had a door-keeper dressed in the Russian national clothes who was courteous welcoming guests. Now all above-mentioned architectural monuments connected with stay of Russians in Hankow are entered in the list of objects of historical value under protection of the city government of Wuhan and are open for free visit of tourists.

On the Hanjiang River on which tea was transported on the North important trade points Fancheng and Guchen in whom trade piers and constructions of the end of a tsinsky era also remained were located. Some of them were restored recently. The county Shetsi of the Province of Henan in which numerous trade and credit institutions were located was other important transit point on the way of tea to Russia. Here continuously there arrived the caravans of mules loaded with tea bales, here

merchants from the northern regions of China stopped, trade negotiations were conducted. Still several paved remained a stone of streets of the Minsk and tsinsky time, ancient facades of shops and shops and also the huge house for meetings of merchants from the northern Provinces of Shanxi and Shaanxi. The counties of Pingyao, the Taiga, Qixian and Yuytsa of the Province of Shanxi were the homeland of many rich northern merchants who of income from tea trade allocated huge amounts of money for carrying out large-scale construction. Here the set of refined residences of rich merchants - sykheyuan, executed in the North Chinese style, such as residence of family Wang in Linshi, the residence of family of Tsao in the Taiga, the residence of family of Qiao in Qixian, the residence of family of Chang in Yuytsy was built. From them the residence of family of Qiao in Qixian in which for the last 10 years the set of historical films was shot is especially well-known, for example, "Light a red lamp" and "The residence of family of Qiao". Thanks to it this residence turned into a tourist attraction for a long time. The owner of the residence Qiao Zhi thane was a one of brave, taking the risk, but at the same time prudent merchants of the middle of the 19th century. During the revolt of taypin he one ventured to go to the areas south of Yangtze covered by a war flame to resume there purchases of tea and by that to revive long ago the interrupted Chinese-Russian way of tea trade.

The site of a tea trade way remained on border of the modern Province of Shanxi and the Inner Mongolia is a mountain outpost Shahukou in the county Yusyan of the Province of Shanxi. The tea brought from Shanxi was taken vkhukh-Hoto (the modern capital of the autonomous Area of Inner Mongolia; the old name - Guihua). The house of Dashengkui from the county of Pingyao owning 20 Ltd companies of camels which caravans reached Moscow was the largest trading house from the Province of Shanxi. Today in suburbs of Hohhot several settlements of the cameleers who arose at that time remained. From Hohhot the caravans of camels loaded with tea went to the North, in 40 days overcame more than 1000 kilometers of the Mongolian steppes and arrived to border with Russia, to the city of Kyakhta. Now Kyakhta is a small town on the Russian-Mongolian border. Here for a long time there is a museum of tea founded by Russians, and the city is one of the important tourist centers. Russians never forgot about this old route of international trade and about its starting point - Hankow. In 1999 the Russian international tourist bureau opened a tourist route "Along a tea trade way": Moscow - Yekaterinburg - Irkutsk - Lake Baikal - Ulan-Ude - Ulaanbaatar - Hohhot - Beijing.

Since 2002 representatives international tourist

bureau of the Buryat republic of the Russian Federation and other representatives of the Russian side repeatedly came on a visit to Wuhan and held negotiations on continuation of this tourist route to Wuhan. They hope that the route will be able to reach Hankow and Yangloudong (county Chibi), and suggest the Chinese tourists to test also a route along an old trade way.

In the second half of the 20th century the Russian-Chinese relations not always developed smoothly. As a result of the Soviet-Chinese rupture of the 60th the place of the Chinese tea in the Russian market was occupied by tea from India and Sri Lanka (Ceylon). This rather cheap red tea which is on sale in the form of small powder has bitterish and tart taste and on the quality strongly concedes to the Chinese black and green tea. Many Russians, especially old people, with nostalgia remember the Chinese tea and hope that time when tea from Hankow returns on the Russian market will come and the old tea trade way between China and Russia will revive. In this regard opening of a tourist route along this trade way is represented especially necessary.

We entered the 21st age, an age of economic globalization. In conditions when China pursues active policy of openness for the outside world and development of the western regions of the country, the reminder to the whole world about rich history of the Chinese-Russian way of tea trade will help to strengthen entrepreneurial spirit of the Chinese people and to inspire in it self-confidence. This year is announced in China "year of Russia", and the next year will become "year of China" in Russia. Both parties exchanged a number of top-level visits, economic, trade, scientific and cultural exchange become closer. It strengthens the friendship passing from father to son between the Russian and Chinese people. The tourism becoming now the most promptly developing direction of economy is an important component of the Russian-Chinese economic exchange.

The Chinese-Russian tea trade way is the important certificate of an old story of trade relations between two states and has big appeal to tourists both from Russia and China, and from other countries. We are obliged to use this opportunity, to unite our resources and to open a tourist route along a tea trade way, having turned it into an important tourist object. It will promote further economic and cultural exchange between Russia and China and also to closer communication between the people of our countries.



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Cheryl Robinson
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