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Belt and Road

Australia nixes state Belt and Road deals with China in first veto

Morrison government uses new powers amid concerns over Beijing's influence

In better days: Staff members chat at a Beijing venue as they prepare a seminar of Australia-China bilateral cooperation in resources and infrastructure in Western  Australia.    © Reuters

SYDNEY -- The Australian government on Wednesday said it will cancel agreements between the state of Victoria and China regarding cooperation with Beijing's Belt and Road infrastructure initiative in a move likely to stoke tensions between the two nations.

This marks the first time that a decision was made to cancel a deal under a law enacted in December, according to the federal government. That law grants the foreign minister the authority to nullify an agreement struck between a local government in Australia and another country if such a deal goes against the federal government's foreign policy.

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