IF premier Li Peng is well enough to meet Australian Prime Minister Paul Keating in a fortnight, he is likely to get a rude reminder that China's human rights record is still a major cause of concern in the West. An Australian diplomat in Beijing said yesterday: ''Human rights will definitely be on Keating's agenda, it is just a question of how forcefully he decides to raise it.'' It has been suggested that Mr Keating will present a list of political prisoners to Chinese leaders, but embassy officials refused to directly confirm this. ''I can't say, but it is certainly his prerogative as Prime Minister to do so,'' one official said. Mr Keating, who will arrive in Beijing on June 23, will be anxious to maintain the Sino-Australian human rights dialogue initiated in 1991. Australia has already sent two delegations to China and Mr Keating will be hoping to get a commitment from Beijing to send a reciprocal delegation to Australia, according to diplomats. But independent analysts noted that Mr Keating might be constrained from taking a very forceful stand on human rights by the need to strengthen and develop economic links with China. ''This is primarily a trade visit and so he will have to be careful not to jeopardise that by taking too strong a line on human rights,'' one analyst said. Mr Keating will also raise regional security issues, but again it is not clear if he will directly confront Beijing with Canberra's concerns about China's military expansionism in the South China Sea. During his two-day visit to Beijing, Mr Keating is scheduled to meet President Jiang Zemin, Mr Li and Executive Vice-Premier Zhu Rongji, who is regarded as ''an old friend of Australia''. Mr Keating will also spend two days in Shanghai before returning to Australia on June 27. Mr Keating's visit will be preceded by that of his Malaysian counterpart Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad who will arrive on his first official visit to Beijing since 1985 on Sunday. Unlike Mr Keating, Dr Mahathir has made it clear that he will not be voicing any concerns over China's human rights record during his nine-day visit. In an interview with the official New China News Agency yesterday, Dr Mahathir lashed out at the ''sheer hypocrisy'' of Western governments using human rights issues to bolster their economic interests.