Australian Foreign Affairs Minister Bob Carr has hit out at opposition leader Tony Abbott for what says were "dangerously dumb" comments about Chinese investment.
Speaking in Beijing on Tuesday, Mr. Abbott warned about state-owned foreign enterprises buying into Australian companies, saying it would "rarely be in Australia's interest".
Carr says Abbott's comments are dangerously adversarial and could offend other Asian countries.
"It disturbs me that he is making in three or four of the things he said about China what can only be seen and what will be seen by them I think as an adversarial approach with China and I think that is reckless," he said.
"I think it is really dangerously dumb for this country's interest."
He says Mr. Abbott is trying to change the rules and moving towards a "blanket prohibition on Chinese investment by state-owned companies".
"You've got farm communities of Australia that are guaranteed prosperity because Chinese urbanization has seen people buy their food stuff from supermarkets stocked with Australian produce.
"You've got 5,000 mining jobs in Australia directly dependent on Chinese investment.
The Opposition, however, clarified that Mr. Abbott was merely making the point that any investment by Chinese government-owned companies should be carefully scrutinized.