Han Lu, researcher at the China Institute of International Studies, underlines Wang’s impressions, stating in a 2017/2018 article about highlights of Sino-Russia relations, that military cooperation between the two countries in particular reached a new level. In 2017, China and Russia conducted in-depth cooperation in defense consultations and joint training. Both countries signed a road map for military cooperation and development for the period of 2017-2020. At the same time, Lu highlights, both countries carried out three joint performances on sea, land, and air. At sea, the Chinese and Russian navy held an annual joint naval military exercise (in Vladivostok, the "Joint Sea 2017"), including on counter-terrorism, joint search and rescue, and the protection of maritime traffic lines. On land, the two countries held a joint counter-terrorism exercise, which aimed at enhancing the ability to jointly respond to terrorist threats. Finally, Chinese and Russian armed forces carried out the six-day air defense drills dubbed "Aerospace Security - 2017" (空天安全-2017), where the two armies made new breakthroughs cooperating in the field of anti-missile coordination.
The annual report on Russia-China relations, jointly published by Chinese and Russian academia notes, however, that China and Russia did not achieve major breakthroughs when it came to military-technical cooperation in 2017 . Instead of signing new large-scale contracts they focused on implementing agreements that had been signed in the past. In addition, they point out that there was no record of new large contracts being signed between China and Russia in the field of military technology in 2017 (and until the report was written in March 2018). The authors of the report highlight that it is necessary to consider the lengthy process of preparing major contracts in the field of military cooperation, as well as a large number of technical features. Often, drafting these contracts takes three to five years, and in some cases even longer, which explains the seeming lack of progress in signing major contracts.
Even without major breakthroughs, they found that bilateral military technical cooperation between the two countries seems to have increased and expanded into new and more sensitive areas. The fact that the amount of relevant information and materials in the media has decreased may have been at the request of the Chinese side. For instance, there was an unscheduled meeting of the Russian-Chinese Intergovernmental Commission for Military-Technical Cooperation (中俄政府间军事技术合作混合委员会会议), which was held in Moscow in December 2017. This meeting could indicate that there was new joint project coordination but the specific content was not announced.
Meanwhile the authors listed continued military cooperation projects, such as Russia supplying a large number of aircraft engines to China, including a contract for the supply of approximately 100 AL-31F engines and the same number of D-30KP-2 engines, for a total amount of approximately $1 billion. In addition, there was continued cooperation in the areas of joint development and technology exchange, however slow. Negotiations on joint development of heavy helicopters, for instance, was a project that started in 2008/09, but it was not until May 2016 that a framework agreement was signed. Cooperation in the field of dual-use technology, namely the wide-body long-range aircraft (C929), was progressing faster. The two sides reached an agreement as early as the end of 2016 and established the company China-Russia Commercial Aircraft International Corporation Co., Ltd. (中俄商用飞机国际有限公司).
In terms of numbers, in 2017, China accounted for approximately 14.4% of Russia's total defense industry orders ($6.5 billion), including S-400 air defense missile systems, Su-35 fighters, and Mi-171 helicopters. The number of weapons Russia provided to China in 2017 exceeded India for the first time in years (even though more than 50% of Russian arms sales went to the Middle East).
A Xinhua headline recently proclaimed"China, Russia to lift military relations to new high" as "the two sides will enhance their mutual support on their respective core interests, and improve exchange and cooperation mechanisms at all levels". This headline and subheading should be music to the ears of Wang Haiyun, and the articles presented here confirm a strengthening of the Chinese-Russian military bond. However, even if cooperation is increasing it does not seem that China and Russia can reach a new dimension of joint military cooperation. One of the reasons may be that even though both countries strive for modernization and military high tech, they do it separately.
 Wang Haiyun: Military relations reflect the 70 years of China-Russia diplomatic relations, Global Times, 3.6.2019
 "Sino-Russian military technology cooperation” (中俄军事技术合作), in the 4th annual report of “Russia China Dialogue: 2018 Modus operandi" (中俄对话：2018 模式), published by the Institute of International Studies at Fudan University, Russian International Affairs Committee, and Far Eastern Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, May 2018