Wednesday, August 29, 2007

China Demands US-Australia-Japan APEC Meeting "Be More Transparent"

China's President Hu Will Sign New Energy, Natural Resources Deals With Australia

This story from the China Post claims that China's President Hu Jintao will be signing new deals for energy and natural resources - read Australian coal and uranium - when he visits Sydney next week.

But those deals are unlikely to feature any significant commitments from China when it comes to climate change, as government ministers have recently claimed.

Australia is now a "main supplier" of energy resources to China, with trade between the nations reaching more than $33 billion in 2006 alone.

But, as expected, China is unhappy with the controversial 'closed door' meeting between the leaders of Australia, Japan and the United States, which is expected to focus on the United States' plans to locate infrastructure for its global missile shield across the region.

Australia's foreign minister, Alexander Downer, repeatedly states that Australia is not helping the United States to "contain" China, but China doesn't believe him. Nor should anyone else.

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China's Assistant Foreign Minister Cui Tiankai said of the United States-Australia-Japan security meeting being held during the APEC summit :

"It is our view that such a meeting should be more transparent," Cui said.

This will be the first trilateral security meeting for the three nations, but China has apparently been rebuffed from having observers sit in on the meeting.

China is already kyboshing any talk that there will be major breakthroughs on the climate change front during the APEC summit.

Which should come as a surprised to prime minister Howard.

Or at least, that news should come as a surprise to anyone who believed Howard when he said he expected there would be significant progress with China and the United States on climate change, thanks to the APEC summit.

China still believes that the United Nations should take the leading role in the fight against global warming, and Australia and the United States should endorse UN plans that have already won praise and support from most of the EU.

Will President Bush Cancel His Sydney APEC Visit To Deal With Iraq And Iran?

Howard Claims Climate Change Will Be Top Priority At APEC - But China And US Already Downplaying Any Major Progress