(博讯北京时间2009年3月29日 首发 - 支持此文作者/记者)
（When asked why such an important meeting would be kept from the Australian media at such a crucial time in the bilateral relationship, a spokeswoman for Mr Rudd told The Australian: "It was a private meeting between the two. It is not the Prime Minister of Australia's role to put out a press release announcing what every visiting politician is doing." ）
PM Kevin Rudd keeps Lodge talks with Chinese secret
Cameron Stewart and Michael Sainsbury | March 24, 2009
Article from: The Australian
AS far as Beijing was concerned, the discreet lunch held at The Lodge was a case of exquisite timing.
With Kevin Rudd about to visit Washington for his first meeting with President Barack Obama, who better to bend the Prime Minister's ear than the propaganda chief of the Chinese Communist Party, Li Changchun.
The visit by Mr Li, China's fifth most powerful man, also comes at a time when Beijing wants to win approval from the Foreign Investment Review Board on the $US19.5 billion ($28billion) deal between China's state-owned Chinalco and Australian- and London-listed mining group Rio Tinto. That deal is one of a flood of applications to the FIRB - including a $2.6 billion takeover of OZ Minerals by China's Minmetals - which will define the business relationship between the countries for a generation.
Last night, despite its insistence that Beijing remained at arm's-length from the running of Chinalco, the miner's former general manager, Xiao Yaqing, was appointed to the nation's cabinet.
During Saturday's talks Mr Li, the head of propaganda, media and ideology and ranked five in China's nine-person ruling politburo standing committee, also had other issues to discuss: the stalled free trade agreement between the countries, the economic crisis and hopes Australia would lobby for China to play a more central role in the International Monetary Fund.
Normally such a meeting would be big news, but it wasn't because the Australian media was not told.
Yet China's state-owned media was ushered into The Lodge and Mr Rudd was splashed across the Chinese press with footage of his talks on the nation's main television station CCTV. As a result, hundreds of millions of Chinese knew more about Mr Rudd's diplomatic activities than did his own countrymen. Australians were therefore none the wiser about what motivated Mr Rudd to declare on Sunday, less than 24 hours after meeting Mr Li, that he would push for China to be given a more central role in the global financial system. Mr Rudd will argue for China to be elevated within the IMF at next week's meeting of the G20 in London.
Within hours, CCTV was lauding the outcome on its website under the headline "Australian PM promotes China's role in IMF".
When asked why such an important meeting would be kept from the Australian media at such a crucial time in the bilateral relationship, a spokeswoman for Mr Rudd told The Australian: "It was a private meeting between the two. It is not the Prime Minister of Australia's role to put out a press release announcing what every visiting politician is doing."
But Malcolm Turnbull, who spoke to Mr Li yesterday and discussed the meeting with reporters afterwards, questioned why Mr Rudd was not open and transparent about his meeting. "I would not even speculate as to why anybody would keep such a meeting private," the Opposition Leader told The Australian last night. "Mr Li is a very senior figure in the Chinese Communist Party and Australia and China have many significant issues of mutual interest to discuss. It is always best for leaders to be open and transparent about their dealings with foreign governments and leaders."
Only late yesterday - in response to a request from The Australian - did the Prime Minister's office release any details of the visit.
It confirmed the two men had a 30-minute meeting and a one-hour lunch at The Lodge, and they discussed ways to further develop "the economic, political and broader relationship".
"They agreed on the need for the upcoming G20 summit in London to co-ordinate responses to the global economic crisis, and agreed that Australia and China would work closely on this," the spokesperson said.
Mr Li arrived in Canberra last Friday and conveyed sincere greetings and friendly wishes to the Australian people in a written statement delivered at the airport, according to China's state-run news agency Xinhua. "I believe (my) visit can expand consensus, deepen co-operation and promote development," Mr Li said.
"Proceeding from the fundamental interests of our development, our two countries should promote energy and resources enterprises to forge long-term strategic co-operative relations."
Mr Rudd spoke highly of the stimulus measures adopted by China after the financial crisis, according to Xinhua.
After joining the communist party in 1965. Mr Li became the youngest ever party secretary of a major city, Shenyang, in 1983. In 1998, he was appointed to the politburo as its youngest ever member and ascended to the Standing Committee in 2002.
Mr Li also urged Australia and China to steadily advance negotiations on the free trade agreement in line with active, pragmatic, balanced and mutually beneficial principles.
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