world growth

world growth

Monday, June 7, 2010

Australia-China trade to top $85 billion

SYDNEY — Australia's two-way trade with China is set to top 100 billion dollars (85 billion US) this year, Foreign Minister Stephen Smith said Friday as he welcomed further investment from the Asian giant.

China is Australia's largest trading partner and in 2009 became the country's biggest export market as it snaps up raw materials such as iron ore needed for its rapid industrialisation.

Smith said last year may have been a defining moment in Australia's economic relations with China, with two-way trade reaching 85 billion dollars, almost 17 percent of total trade.

"Thirty years ago our two-way trade in goods and services with China was under one billion dollars, three percent of Australia's total trade," he told a conference in Perth.

"This year two-way trade may well reach the 100 billion dollar mark."

The foreign minister said Chinese investment in Australia was also expanding, and the government of centre-left Labor Prime Minister Kevin Rudd was open to more.

"Australia maintains, as it has for many years, a consistent, open and welcoming stance towards foreign investment, whether from China or elsewhere," Smith told a Committee for Economic Development of Australia symposium.

"Since the government came to office in December 2007, Australia has approved around 60 billion dollars of Chinese investment, including investment in Australian business and real estate."

Australia's vast resources sector is the subject of intense commercial interest to fast-growing China, with a particular appetite for its deposits of iron ore and coking coal -- key ingredients for steelmaking.

In 2009 tensions flared over the arrest of Rio Tinto executive and Australian passport holder Stern Hu in Shanghai and a visit to Australia by exiled Uighur leader Rebiya Kadeer.

However, trade with China helped Australia ride out the global slowdown as the only advanced economy not to enter recession.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5g5BNv7DBPhv0VKMpE9kCTIOZ-9-g

3 comments:

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