Tony Abbott eyes Canadian cash for faltering projects, may compromise on climate change on G20 agenda

Climate change could be included on the agenda for G20 talks in Brisbane under a compromise aimed at winning the approval of both Prime Minister Tony Abbott and US President Barack Obama.

The news comes as Mr Abbott embarks on the North American leg of his three-country mission, aiming to unlock hundreds of billions of dollars held in the giant Canadian retirement savings sector for investment in Australian infrastructure.

Mr Abbott is in Ottawa on Sunday and Monday, where he will also discuss the two countries' shared caution on climate change policy when it comes to global warming, against a newly assertive US.

The last stop on the tour will be the US from Monday evening, with a busy schedule of talks with government and business leaders in New York, Washington and Houston.

In the US, Mr Abbott will hold his first talks with President Barack Obama, where he is expected to discuss issues from the strategic - tensions in the South and East China seas for example - to the economic, with the White House still keen to see climate change policy reinstated on the agenda of the G20 meeting in Brisbane in November.

Fairfax Media understands the issue is likely to get formal recognition on the agenda after all, but probably under a mutually agreeable heading such as ''energy efficiency''.

The visit to Canada comes despite the leaders of both countries having been together just 24 hours earlier in France.

Mr Abbott believes Canadian superannuation funds such as the major public sector portfolios which together control more than $400 billion, can be attracted to invest in new ports, road and rail projects, and other public infrastructure plans in Australia, some of which are stalled for lack of adequate capital.

Mr Abbott's trip to Canada is the first prime ministerial visit since John Howard in 2006, and comes with a solid business delegation.

At a broader level, the visit is aimed at reinforcing the closeness of the two Commonwealth democracies, and at further cementing the bonds between the conservative leaders of the two nations, Mr Abbott and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

Mr Abbott believes Canadian retirement funds would be more inclined to consider investment in Australia, and in stable infrastructure projects in particular, if only it was front of mind.

He flew to Ottawa from France on Sunday, swinging his attention to investment opportunities after what in France had necessarily been a historical focus.

There, his program had been dominated by the 70th anniversary commemorations of the Allied D-Day campaign, which turned the war's course, and the 100th anniversary of the First World War and, particularly, its costly Western Front battles, which Mr Abbott believes rank as Australia's greatest military contribution.

Before leaving France, Mr Abbott met socialist President Francois Hollande at the Elysee Palace.

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The story Tony Abbott eyes Canadian cash for faltering projects, may compromise on climate change on G20 agenda first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.

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