China and Australia have signed an energy deal worth more than $40 billion — the largest trade deal ever between the two nations. The deal comes after tensions rose between the Asia-Pacific powerhouses over recent Chinese bids for Australian commodities companies and the arrest of an Australian Rio Tinto executive in Shanghai. In Tuesday’s deal, China will receive liquefied natural gas from the Gorgon Gas Field off Australia’s west coast
The United States on Wednesday called for more transparency from China on the arrests of four mining employees, including an Australian national, on charges of stealing state secrets. U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke is raising the question with Chinese leaders, including Premier Wen Jiabao, with whom he is to meet Thursday in Beijing
Four employees of the Shanghai office of Australia’s Rio Tinto, the world’s second-largest mining company, have been arrested over allegedly stealing China’s state secrets, the Shanghai state security authority said Thursday, according to Xinhua. An Australian, identified by the Australian government as Stern Hu, had been held along with three Chinese co-workers since Sunday, Foreign Minister Stephen Smith said
An Australian employee of Rio Tinto, the world’s second-largest mining company, is being held in China on suspicion of espionage and stealing state secrets, the Australian foreign minister said Wednesday. The man, identified by the Australian government as Stern Hu, has been held along with three Chinese co-workers since Sunday, Foreign Minister Stephen Smith said. He said the reason for Hu’s detention “came as a surprise” to the Australian government
A deal between mining giant Rio Tinto and Chinalco, a state-owned Chinese aluminum company, was called off after it became a hot-button issue in Australian politics. Meanwhile, Rio Tinto announced it has signed a non-binding agreement with BHP Billiton for iron ore production in Western Australia.