Views From Abroad on United States Vote

A survey of world reaction to the election of Bill Clinton reveals cautious optimism, amid concerns about trade protectionism and disruptions in US foreign policy in the Middle East and China

Australians expect little turbulence in bilateral ties

MOST Australians liked Bush. He was, after all, the first US president to visit the country in 25 years. But they haven't been too upset over Clinton's victory.

"If you'd asked me six months ago about a Clinton presidency, people would have been in a dither," says a senior government official. "But we've had plenty of time to look at Clinton though this long campaign. This is not a boy from the back woods. All his interests seem to be of an international kind. We look at the attitude of US politicians toward Japan. This US-Japan relationship is the single most important in the world. It's important to us. Clinton is good on that."

But the National Farmers' Federation found little encouragement. While Clinton has criticized the bureaucracy of US farm-support programs, they see him maintaining farm subsidy schemes that limit Australian access to the US market for beef, sugar and dairy products.

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