Chinese premier warns Australia against protectionism

English's remarks came after a meeting with visiting Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang in Wellington, Efe news reported.

"We can not close our doors, that is not the solution", Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said during his visit to the Australian capital Canberra.

China is Australia's biggest trading partner, with bilateral trade exceeding $107 billion and bilateral investment exceeding $100 billion.

After four days of trade talk, diplomacy and a footy game, China's second most powerful leader Premier Li Keqiang is set to wrap up his visit to Australia. The agreement to expand imports of Australian beef accords with China's strategy of diversifying suppliers to guard against unforeseeable interruptions, as with the scandal involving Brazilian meat.

Premier Li and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull are statesmen united in opposition to a common foe: trade protectionism.

"The idea that Australia has to choose between China and the United States is not correct". Their bilateral trade reached some 108 billion U.S. dollars a year ago.

Li hoped that his visit could usher in new prospects of bilateral cooperation in various fields and push forward the continuous, sound and steady development of China-Australia relations in the spirit of mutual respect, equal treatment and win-win cooperation.

While Trump has advocated an "America First" approach, China has signaled its desire to play a bigger worldwide role, particularly in promoting free trade, a stance reinforced by Li.

NCAA Tournament: Oregon Ducks Outshoot Kansas, Land In Final Four
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Mr Guy also welcomed the signing of an agreement with China aimed at strengthening cooperation in fisheries, and an agreed list of projects to commence as part of the Agricultural Growth Partnership which was signed a year ago.

Countries including Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam have overlapping claims to the resource-rich territory.

Other measures aimed at supporting Australian meat and livestock exports through the agreement include expanding the chilled meat trade and expediting the listing of 15 additional beef and sheepmeat processing establishments eligible to export meat to China.

Lawrence Summers, former president of Harvard University and US Treasury secretary, brought up a question of trade imbalance between China and other countries and opening-up issue concerning China's major sectors, such as the auto industry.

Turnbull, who is a fan of the Swans, sat with Li who wore the scarves of both teams at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

"Maintaining peace and stability of the South China Sea, safeguarding the freedom of navigation and overflight in the South China Sea are something that all nations in the region should be concerned about and effort to achieve", Li said. According to experts, China now has "effective control" over the South China Sea.

The number of direct flights possible between China and New Zealand will increase from 49 to 59 under the Air Services Agreement.

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