May 23, 2018 / 9:20 AM / a month ago

Australia central bank chief: Important to avoid escalating issues with China

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australia’s top central banker said on Wednesday it was “important we avoid escalating” political issues as the country finds itself in a diplomatic hot water with China, its biggest trading partner.

Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) Governor Philip Lowe made the comment in response to a question on the risk of economic fallout from the tension between the two nations.

He was speaking at the Australia-China Relations Institute in Sydney.

Relations between the two countries have cooled since late 2017 when Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s government proposed a bill to limit foreign influence in Australia, including political donations. Beijing saw the move as “anti-China”.

Reporting by Swati Pandey; Editing by Richard Borsuk

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