Other regional issues
Samoa's expected new prime minister has pledged to shelve a $100 million Beijing-backed port development, calling the project excessive for the small Pacific island that is already heavily indebted to China.
No one outside China knows if two new nuclear reactors that are under construction and that will produce plutonium serve a dual civilian-military use.
Disputes over technology and the coronavirus pandemic have eroded relations between the two countries in recent years.
Australia opened embassies in the Marshall Islands and French Polynesia on Tuesday as Canberra accelerates its efforts to counter growing competition from China for influence in the Pacific.
U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin will attend the Shangri-La Dialogue Asian security summit due to be held in Singapore next month, organisers said, after the annual meeting was cancelled last year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Hong Kong former legislator and pro-democracy activist Ted Hui is welcome to campaign on political issues in Australia and his arrival was not a matter for China, the chair of the Australian parliament’s intelligence committee said on Thursday, angering Beijing, which warned of further damage to already strained ties between the two countries.