Australian Prime Minister John Howard said Wednesday that his new government will continue to follow the one-China policy.
He said at a gathering of the Chinese community in Sydney, "It remains, of course, the policy of my government to follow the one-China policy, which has been the policy of my government for many years."
He also said that Australia and China "have the common interests in ensuring that peace, stability and tranquility prevails across the Taiwan Straits."
Howard, who won his fourth consecutive term as the prime minister in the October elections, made the remarks days after China announced that it will enact a law against secession.
Howard recalled the rapid development of Australian-Chinese relations for the past few years, saying he is looking forward to meeting Chinese leaders again when he visits China next year.
Chinese Ambassador to Australia Fu Ying said China highly appreciates the Australian government and the prime minister's understanding on the Taiwan issue. "It (the understanding) consolidates the political foundation of our friendly relations," the ambassador said.
(Xinhua News Agency December 23, 2004)