Comment permalink

See below for full video interview.

It is important China gets the message that democracies cannot be pressured in to changing their positions on core issues such as democracy and human rights, Prof Robert Patman says.

The international relations specialist made the comments during an ODTtv Global Insight interview about the increasingly fraught relationship between New Zealand and China.

Prof Patman said New Zealand's relationship with China had changed since the rosy, early days following the landmark, 2008, joint free trade agreement. China had grown economically, technologically and militarily. Its leader, Xi Jinping, had taken the communist state in a more authoritarian direction domestically and had made it a more active player globally.

Prof Patman said New Zealand needed to remain friendly but firm with China.

I think it is very important that New Zealand sends the message that it does want a mutually profitable economic relationship with China, but not at any price,'' he said.

Not at the price of  appeasing China or compromising, under Chinese pressure, in the area of democracy and human rights.''




Democracy is not a movable feast. Many expect the Govt to recognise the unelected leader in Venezuela, because everyone else has. NZ does not, because it's undemocratic. You either stick to democracy (free elections), or you don't.


Never miss another Global Insight interview. Subscribe now to receive your fortnightly email alert. Click below.