Logo 468x60

China, Russia form space force

MOSCOW (Axios): Russia is now firmly allied with China in the quest for a permanent presence on the Moon, with the two powers positioned for heavy sway on international space policy, Axios Space author Miriam Kramer writes.

Why it matters: The U.S. and Russia were uneasy partners in orbit for decades. As the two grow farther apart, the rift could reshape the geopolitical landscape above Earth — and on it.

China and Russia last week signed an agreement to develop a lunar research station on or orbiting the Moon.

Russia is losing a significant source of revenue as SpaceX flies astronauts to the space station, ending NASA’s reliance on the Russian-made Soyuz rocket.

Zoom out: China’s space program and industry are booming, with support from the government and a long-term vision.

Europe, Canada and Japan are partnering with the U.S. on Moon plans. But China and Russia could pull in their own allies.