If there’s one thing the Chinese love, it’s meeting people face-to-face. In-person meetings go a long way in showing you care about the relationship. This is what Trade Minister Don Farrell did last week during a two-day trip to Beijing to come up with a pathway to ending all remaining tariffs and restrictions on Australian goods. While some say he came home empty-handed — as no sanctions were lifted — I disagree. The Chinese are not going to remove tariffs on $20 billion worth of Australian products including barley, wine, beef and lobster because the minister is asking nicely. This is three years of trade turmoil between China and Australia that will take time to resolve. But things are heading in the right direction. After Farrell had a virtual meeting with his Chinese counterpart Commerce Minister Wang Wentao in February, there was movement with the resumption of coal, cotton and copper trade. Beijing also agreed last month to undertake an expedited review of its tariffs on Australian barley over the next three months. In return, the Federal Government will temporarily suspend its complaint lodged with the World Trade Organisation, which was slapped on China for imposing the tariffs in 2020. The outcome of the Senator’s China trip is exactly the result I expected. He called his talks “warm, constructive and candid”, and said there was “positive momentum” in the relationship between the two nations. The counterparts agreed to step up dialogue with Wang also accepting an invitation to visit Farrell in South Australia in July to build on their discussions. I’m certain we’ll see the Chinese move on removing tariffs in the coming months, if not weeks, because a bond is being formed and that’s the trick to winning China over.