Global Insight: NZ has role on world stage

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New Zealand needs to step up as compromised super powers struggle to deal with global threats.

Neither the United States, China nor Russia are able to unilaterally tackle global issues such as terrorism and climate change, Professor Robert Patman has told Global Insight today.

The University of Otago international affairs specialist describes the US as having a "political system that is broken and needs repairing". China and Russia are authoritarian capitalist states, the first "masquerading as a communist state" and the latter as a democratic state with "simulated elections", he says.

"All three countries face quite profound internal problems", Prof Patman says.

"These great powers may have aspirations to run the world but they actually can't . . . Most of the problems we have now don't respect borders.

"New Zealand has a role to play and . . . needs to take itself out of its comfort zone.

"We can act as a bit of a play-maker on the international stage, bringing others together . . . and we shouldn't shy away from it."

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