‘Scrapping BRI deal will hurt Australia’

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CANBERRA: The Chinese Embassy in Australia on Wednesday criticized a move by the Australian government to cancel an agreement signed between the state of Victoria and China to cooperate under the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), warning that the move will bring further damage to bilateral ties and will only hurt Australia.
In a statement on Wednesday evening, Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne said that a memorandum of understanding and framework agreement Victoria signed with China in relation to the BRI had been cancelled under new Commonwealth veto laws, claiming “the arrangement is inconsistent with Australia’s foreign policy or hurts its foreign relations.”
It is the first time the Australian federal government has used the new veto law, which permits it to cancel agreements states and territories strike with other countries, media reports. The law has been widely regarded as a move targeting China.
Responding to the move, a spokesperson from the Chinese Embassy in Australia said that the move is another “unreasonable and provocative” move taken by Australia against China.
“It further shows that the Australian government has no sincerity in improving China-Australia relations. It is bound to bring further damage to bilateral relations, and will only end up hurting itself,” the spokesperson said.
– The Daily Mail-Global Times News exchange item