Nationals could back free-trade deal with China

THE Leader of The Nationals Warren Truss has said the Coalition's junior partner will back a free trade agreement with China, if it's modelled on a similar deal with Korea.

Deputy Prime Minister Truss made the comments on ABC Radio on Monday morning, confirming the minor party's support for the deal.

However, he said there still remained some concerns over the details, saying the party would need to see "the quality of the agreements".

Mr Truss said "similar arrangements" with the Chinese as that negotiated with Seoul would "not create a problem".

But he also said any talks over foreign investments from China in agriculture and agribusiness should be on a "sensitive list" of investments.

It is understood China would like to raise Foreign Investment Review Board scrutiny of its investments in Australia to $1 billion per project, but the Coalition went to the election promising tighter controls on such purchases.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott is set to head to China as part of a wider Asian trade mission in April.

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