Fair-Weather Friends?

As any australian diplomat will admit, managing the bilateral relationship with China is a relentless, high- energy task. The volume of issues that are in play at any time - for instance, trade and investment, uranium sales, human rights, tourist visas, students, intellectual property, military exercises, official delegations and Taiwan - makes for a great deal of bureaucratic and political work. Factor in the increasing intensity of engagement across the board (as well as the pace of globalization more generally) and it's clear that Canberra's China nannies are a busy bunch. A single incident or issue - hardball iron-ore price...

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