NZ politicians need to learn the ABCs of Chinese politics for a 'constructive relationship', foreign policy expert says

A key issue to come out of last week's events was the issue of political donations and concern over foreign influence on New Zealand politics, says Anne-Marie Brady, an expert on Chinese politics from Canterbury University. 

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Corin Dann interviews China expert Professor Anne-Marie Brady on foreign influence in our political process. Source: Q+A

Professor Brady said it was "great for the Chinese community to be involved in politics in New Zealand, that's what we want and it's fine for wealthy people to be contributing to political parties". 

"But it's not ok for people who are connected to the politics of a foreign Government that has a deliberate policy to interfere in the policies of other nations."

A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said China had no intention and had never intended to interfere in the internal affairs of other countries. 

Dr Brady said New Zealand needed to engage in a process of upskilling local and central level politicians and the public sector "in the ABC of the Chinese Party state so we can have a constructive relationship with China, an eyes-wide-open relationship with China and one that sets boundaries". 

She said the New Zealand Government needs to engage "in a careful investigation into the extent of China's political interference activity in New Zealand".