But the shift in Australia's tone - away from the "chest beating" of Scott Morrison's government - is still a big deal, she says.
Beijing was critical of that government's comments, including those by then Defence Minister Peter Dutton who compared China to 1930s Germany and said Australia had to "prepare for war".
Mr Wang alluded to that earlier this month, saying the "root cause" of tensions between Canberra and Beijing was "irresponsible words and deeds". gclub8888
"In Chinese or Asian culture, the idea of face - mianzi - is particularly important," Dr Hsu says.