May 6, 2021


China’s state economic adviser said that the China-Australia Strategic Economic Dialogue had been “indefinitely” suspended, strained relations between the two countries.

“Recently, some Australian Commonwealth Government officials launched a series of measures to disrupt the normal exchanges and cooperation between both countries out of Cold War mindset and ideological discrimination”

China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC)

Wang Wenbin, a spokesman for China’s foreign ministry; said that the suspension was “necessary and legitimate” in reaction to Australia’s pressure China’s cooperation.

When Australia became the first country to officially exclude Chinese tech giant Huawei from its 5G network in 2018, bilateral relations were strained. Last year, after Australia demanded an impartial inquiry into the origins of the novel coronavirus, the Asian country responded with economic sanctions.

The commission’s decision was surprising, according to Australian Trade Minister Dan Tehan; since the dialogue was “an important forum for Australia and China to work on issues relevant to our economic partnership.”

The last meeting was in Beijing in 2017; when Australia’s trade minister signed a deal on Belt and Road initiative collaboration with third-party countries.

Australia has refused to sign agreements that would allow it to directly participate in China’s flagship foreign policy initiative.

How China’s decisition affects Australia

Experts believe the tensions between the two countries would have no effects on the iron ore trade; but they could have an impact on Chinese investment in Australia.

“We believe the iron ore trading relationship between Australia and China will remain ring-fenced in relation to current political tensions between the two nations”

Atilla Widnell, managing director at Singapore-based Navigate Commodities Ptd Ltd

Imports of Australian thermal coal have been largely banned in the Asian country. Copper concentrate shipments to China have also decreased since December.

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