Interview with Tom Connell, Sky News Regional

  • Transcript, E&OE
Subject: Australia-China relations.

This transcript has been redacted in accordance with Digital Transformation Agency guidelines.


Tom Connell: To be fair, there's a lot of things that MPs from both sides say on background and don't say publicly. But look, it does seem there's a fair bit of opinion that this wasn't the right thing to do. I want to ask briefly within your portfolio, the Australia-China thaw that might be on. Reports today that the government might consider limiting Chinese investment in critical minerals. Could that send us back to a deep freeze?

Assistant Minister for Foreign Affairs: Well, Tom, since the election, we've been very clear and consistent in the way that we've been addressing our relationship with China. There's no doubt that it's been through a challenging period, but we've made the point that it's in the interests of both sides of this relationship to stabilise the relationship. Now, that doesn't mean a reset. What that means is that in some areas we're going to continue to disagree. We've said that -

Tom Connell: Is this one of them?

Assistant Minister for Foreign Affairs: Well, we've said that we're not going to resile from national interest or national security steps taken by the government. We said that while the government has changed our national interest hasn't changed. So we'll continue to disagree on issues like consular issues, some human rights issues, those trade blockages - that are completely unjustified - and we won't resolve from that.

Tom Connell: We're a bit short on time today events have occurred, so we'll talk another time. Tim Watts - thanks for your time.

Assistant Minister for Foreign Affairs: Pleasure, Tom.

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