On January 12, 2006, visiting Chinese State Councilor Hua Jianmin met with Vaile, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Trade of Australia in Sydney. They exchanged views on bilateral cooperation of mutual benefits in various fields.
Hua aid that the China-Australia relationship is going into a period of sound development. There are no fundamental conflicts between the two countries. Both countries regard each other as good partners for common development enjoying mutual respect and trust. The two economies are highly complementary. The volume of bilateral trade has maintained an annual growth rate of over 30% in recent years. China has become the third largest trade partner and the second largest export market of Australia. At the same time both countries respect the cultural diversity and advocate the harmonious co-existence of different cultures. Both countries enjoy great potentials for cooperation while facing the environmental challenges and promoting sustained development. The Chinese government is willing to work together with the Australian side to push the bilateral relations to a higher level.
Vaile expressed his complete agreement with Hua's comments on the Australia-China relationship. He said that the result of the latest economic census of China further strengthens the determination of the Australian government to develop the relationship with China. The Australian side hoped that Australia and China could accelerate the negotiations on establishing free trade arrangements and agreements. Hua responded that the Chinese government attaches great importance to the negotiations. He hoped that both sides could act in a flexible and pragmatic spirit to advance the negotiations in a positive and steady manner.
During his trip, Hua also met with Acting Queensland Premier Bligh, the Austrilian business people and representatives from the Federation of Chinese Scholars in Australia (FOCSA) in Brisbane. In addition, He visited the Center for Photovoltaic Engineering in New South Wales, the School of Molecular and Microbial Sciences in University of Queensland and the Safety Center in Mines, Testing and Research in Queensland. He particularly learned about successful experiences and practices of Australia in safe production of coal mines.