Scott Morrison says Andrew Forrest could help mend China relations

Scott Morrison may call in help from billionaire mining magnate Andrew ‘Twiggy’ Forrest in trying to smooth over tensions with China.

The prime minister made the admission while visiting Mr Forrest’s Christmas Creek iron ore mine in the Pilbara region, Western Australia, on Thursday.

Mr Morrison visited the mine to praise the resource industry for propping up the economy during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Reporters turned his attention to the ongoing bitter trade war with China, which imposed heavy tariffs on exports like barley, wheat, wine, and coal.

He was asked if Mr Forrest, who has repeatedly called for an easing of tensions between the two countries, would be able to assist the federal government in repairing the relationship.

Mr Morrison was asked if Mr Forrest, who has repeatedly called for an easing of tensions between the two countries, would be able to assist the federal government in repairing the relationship

Mr Morrison was asked if Mr Forrest, who has repeatedly called for an easing of tensions between the two countries, would be able to assist the federal government in repairing the relationship

Mr Morrison was asked if Mr Forrest, who has repeatedly called for an easing of tensions between the two countries, would be able to assist the federal government in repairing the relationship

Scott Morrison has not ruled out seeking help from billionaire mining magnate Andrew 'Twiggy' Forrest in trying to smooth over tensions with China (pictured, Scott Morrison visits the Christmas Creek mine on Thursday)

Scott Morrison has not ruled out seeking help from billionaire mining magnate Andrew 'Twiggy' Forrest in trying to smooth over tensions with China (pictured, Scott Morrison visits the Christmas Creek mine on Thursday)

Scott Morrison has not ruled out seeking help from billionaire mining magnate Andrew ‘Twiggy’ Forrest in trying to smooth over tensions with China (pictured, Scott Morrison visits the Christmas Creek mine on Thursday)

Tension has been growing between Australia and China since Mr Morrison called for an inquiry into the origins of Covid-19 in April 2020 (pictured, Chinese president Xi Jinping)

Tension has been growing between Australia and China since Mr Morrison called for an inquiry into the origins of Covid-19 in April 2020 (pictured, Chinese president Xi Jinping)

Tension has been growing between Australia and China since Mr Morrison called for an inquiry into the origins of Covid-19 in April 2020 (pictured, Chinese president Xi Jinping)

‘Whether it is on the issues you mentioned or any other issues, I like to work with people who get things done,’ he replied.

He added he was regularly chatting to Mr Forrest on the phone and that the pair had ‘worked together for a long time’. 

Australia and China have been locked in a destructive trade war since Mr Morrison called for an inquiry into the origins of Covid-19 a year ago.

China retaliated with severe tariffs on Australian exports and ordered businesses to stop importing other like lobster and cotton.

The restrictions have hit the resource industry hard with thermal coal exports down 70 per cent and metallurgical coal exports down 60 per cent in the six months to January 2021.  

Tensions between China and Australia have also spilled over from the export industry into the political sphere. 

Mr Morrison demanded an apology after China shared in November a doctored image of an Australian soldier cutting the throat of an Afghan child.

The image was released after a four-year Australian Defence Force inquiry was released that reported evidence of 39 murders of civilians or prisoners by 25 SAS troopers serving in Afghanistan from 2009 to 2016. 

Mr Morrison added he was regularly chatting to Mr Forrest on the phone and that the pair had 'worked together for a long time'

Mr Morrison added he was regularly chatting to Mr Forrest on the phone and that the pair had 'worked together for a long time'

Mr Morrison added he was regularly chatting to Mr Forrest on the phone and that the pair had ‘worked together for a long time’

The prime minister made the admission while visiting Mr Forrest's Christmas Creek iron ore mine in the Pilbara region, Western Australia, on Thursday

The prime minister made the admission while visiting Mr Forrest's Christmas Creek iron ore mine in the Pilbara region, Western Australia, on Thursday

The prime minister made the admission while visiting Mr Forrest’s Christmas Creek iron ore mine in the Pilbara region, Western Australia, game kartu online on Thursday

Former defence minister Christopher Pyne also warned Australia could be dragged into a war with China in the next 10 years.  

Despite Covid-19 travel restrictions, Mr Forrest was allowed to visit Asia and pursue potential renewable energy projects for Fortescue Metals last year.  

He was called out when it was revealed he skipped parts of quarantine when he returned to Australia. 

Several states, including Western Australia, closed their borders to interstate travellers without an exemption and required them to self-isolate for 14 days.  

Mr Forrest caught his return flight to NSW and quarantined for 14 days under police supervision.  

He was allowed to avoid a second stint of self-isolation after flying in a private jet back home to Western Australia being granted an exemption. 

The restrictions have hit the resource industry hard with thermal coal exports down 70 per cent and metallurgical coal exports down 60 per cent in the six months to January 2021

The restrictions have hit the resource industry hard with thermal coal exports down 70 per cent and metallurgical coal exports down 60 per cent in the six months to January 2021

The restrictions have hit the resource industry hard with thermal coal exports down 70 per cent and metallurgical coal exports down 60 per cent in the six months to January 2021

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