Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Cuddling up to China is damaging our reputation

28 June 2005

Cuddling up to China is damaging our reputation

The Labour Government should suspend free trade talks with China in protest at Beijing propping up Robert Mugabe's genocidal regime, the Green Party says.

The Times of London has today reported that China has thrown a lifeline to the beleaguered regime of President Robert Mugabe, offering Zimbabwe economic assistance and diplomatic support against the West.

"It's a bad look for New Zealand to be negotiating a free trade agreement with China when its President Hu Jintao has just described Robert Mugabe as a 'respected old friend'," Green Co-Leader Rod Donald says.

"New Zealand's international reputation will be damaged if our Government continues to cuddle up to a man who is financially backing Mugabe's operation 'Drive Out Trash', which the United Nations has labelled a 'disastrous venture that has left 700,000 people homeless or jobless'.

China has rebuffed New Zealand's call for it not to support Mugabe's campaign of destruction with an unequivocal statement that it 'adheres to the principle of not meddling in other countries' internal affairs'.

"This makes a lie of our government's claim that China's labour and environmental standards will be under scrutiny as part of free trade negotiations," Mr Donald says.

"The Chinese regime has an appalling record of human rights abuses that have inflicted pain and suffering on its own citizens and the people of Tibet. That is why President Hu has such an affinity with Mugabe. It's clear that China is more interested in getting its hands on Zimbabwe's mineral wealth and gaining a strangle-hold on that county's economy than trading fairly with New Zealand.

"The New Zealand Government should have the courage to stand up to tyrants. We certainly should not give them preferential access to our economy.

"New Zealand is already far too reliant on China for a wide range of basic products that we should be making ourselves, instead of importing from their sweatshops.

"Statistics New Zealand announced yesterday that our trade deficit with China increased by $500 million for the year to June 30 and now stands at over $2 billion."


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Minister of Finance: Plan Shows $100 Billion Infrastructure Projects

Finance Minister Bill English has today launched the Government’s Ten Year Capital Intentions Plan (CIP) which shows a pipeline of $100.9 billion worth of infrastructure projects over the next decade. More>>


Werewolf: Safe Landings Gordon Campbell on the safety challenge to the Wellington runway extension.

The safety-related legal challenge revolves around the size of the 90 metre long Runway End Safety Area (RESA) being proposed for the runway extension. More>>


Environment Commissioner: We Need To Work Together On Climate Change And Farming

“The debate around agricultural emissions and the ETS has been polarised for too long,” said the Commissioner. “But the ETS is not the only way forward – there are other things that can be done.” More>>


NZ Super Fund: Seeking To Put A Market Price On Climate Change

Oct. 19 (BusinessDesk) - The New Zealand Superannuation Fund says it will devise a set of rules to assess investment winners and losers under climate change, a strategy that could rule out fossil fuels or producers such as current portfolio member Exxon ... More>>


Rejuvenation: Parata Will Not Contest 2017 Election

Education Minister and National List MP Hekia Parata has today announced that she will not be contesting the next election. She advised the Prime Minister of her decision earlier this year. More>>

Prisons Grow: Government Approves Plans For Increased Prison Capacity

Despite significant progress in reducing crime the number of prisoners has increased faster than projected. This is because the proportion of offenders charged with serious crimes has risen, meaning more people are being remanded in custody and serving more of their sentences in prison. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Plastic Bag Activism, And Street Harassment

Amusing to see the Act Party experiencing another outbreak of young fogey-ism. What has aroused the ire of Act Leader David Seymour this time is the introduction of a Greens private members bill to the ballot process, calling for a 15 cents levy on plastic bags to reduce pollution. More>>


Unclear Weapons: US Navy Ship Cleared To Visit NZ For Navy's 75th

United States Navy ship, the USS Sampson, has been given clearance to visit New Zealand next month by Prime Minister John Key... “The process for considering the visit by the USS Sampson is the same as that used for all ships attending the International Naval Review." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news