An Australian industry, government, academic and media delegation will travel to Beijing for dialogue with Chinese counterparts on Thursday, another step in stabilising ties, Foreign Minister Penny Wong said on Saturday.
The high-level meetings, which do not include government ministers, had been held annually since 2014 as a platform to discuss issues of concern, but stopped after 2020.
Australia’s former Labor trade minister Craig Emerson will head the Australian delegation, which will include former Liberal foreign minister Julie Bishop, to show bipartisan political support, a statement from Wong’s office said.
Trade, investment, regional and international security will be discussed, the statement said.
China’s former foreign affairs minister, Li Zhaoxing, will lead the Chinese delegation.
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Secretary Jan Adams, who attended the last dialogue in Beijing as Australia’s ambassador to China, will also be in the delegation.
“This is first time the Dialogue has been held since early 2020 and it represents another step towards increasing bilateral engagement and stabilising our relationship with China,” Wong’s statement said.
Emerson said the meeting was an opportunity to find common ground.
Diplomatic exchanges between the two major trading partners froze in 2020 as China placed curbs on a dozen Australian exports in response to Australia’s call for an investigation into the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Tensions have eased since Australia elected a Labor government in May 2022, and China recently lifted tariffs on Australian barley exports.
Australia says it wants to see trade impediments on lobster and wine exports lifted, and has raised concerns about the detention of two Australian journalists on national security charges.
Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese is expected to visit Beijing this year, although a date has not been set.
Customers of Arm Holdings Ltd including Apple Inc (AAPL.O), Nvidia Corp (NVDA.O), Alphabet Inc (GOOGL.O) and Advanced Micro Devices Inc (AMD.O) have agreed to invest in the chip designer’s initial public offering, according to people familiar with the matter.
Intel Corp (INTC.O), Samsung Electronics Co Ltd (005930.KS), Cadence Design Systems Inc (CDNS.O) and Synopsys Inc (SNPS.O) have also agreed to participate as investors in the offering, the sources added. The talks are ongoing and some other potential investors are also in discussions to invest in the IPO, the sources added.
SoftBank Group Corp (9984.T), which owns Britain-based Arm, is targeting a valuation between $50 billion and $55 billion, Reuters reported earlier on Friday. Arm’s clients have agreed to invest in that valuation range, the sources said.
While it is possible that demand for Arm’s shares will lead to a higher valuation by the time the IPO prices, the move represents a climb-down from the $64 billion valuation at which SoftBank acquired the 25% stake in the company it did not already own from its $100 billion Vision Fund last month.
Apple, Nvidia and the other strategic investors have agreed to invest between $25 million and $100 million each in the blockbuster IPO, the sources said. Arm and SoftBank have set aside 10% of the shares to be sold in the IPO for its clients, Reuters has previously reported.
Amazon.com Inc (AMZN.O), which had previously held talks to invest in the IPO, has decided not to participate, one of the sources said, requesting anonymity as the discussions are confidential.
A scramble among Arm’s clients, comprising the world’s biggest technology companies, to snap up shares in the IPO is testing the semiconductor designer’s adherence to not picking sides in the chip industry.
The interest is fueled by a desire by companies to expand their commercial relationship with Arm and make sure rivals do not gain an edge, Reuters has previously reported.
While an investment in the IPO would not come with a seat on Arm’s board or ability to dictate strategy, it could strengthen ties with each participating company and make it harder for a competitor to acquire Arm later.
Arm and SoftBank did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
AMD, Intel, Synopsys and Nvidia declined to comment. Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, Samsung and Cadence did not immediately respond to requests for comment. The Wall Street Journal reported on Arm’s valuation target earlier on Friday.