PM open to ministerial talks with China

Scott Morrison says he would welcome a resumption of ministerial-level communication with China.
Scott Morrison says he would welcome a resumption of ministerial-level communication with China.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison says there is regular communication with China but he would welcome talks at the ministerial level.

Ties between Australia and its number one trading partner have been fraught this year, which have resulted in tariffs being imposed on some goods and more recently Australian journalists being evacuated from the country.

Mr Morrison insists there is regular communication between the two countries but concedes not at the ministerial level.

"Obviously we would welcome that," he told the ABC's Insiders program.

"We are always available."

He said any talks need to be consistent with Australia's national interests.

"Our trading relationship is mutual one, it's not all one way. We both benefit from it and I believe the Chinese government understands that as well," he said.

He said the government is working constructively with its Indo-Pacific partners who want to see a safe and secure region that respects the sovereignty of every country in the area.

"So the way I think we come through this is by drawing together a region that is focused on stability and I think that will improve relations within the region more broadly," Mr Morrison said.

Australian Associated Press