China's Belt and Road Initiative, geoeconomics and Australia-China relations - with Jane Golley

Guest: Jane Golley, Deputy Director, Australian Centre on China in the World, Australian National University

Host: James Laurenceson, Deputy Director, Australia-China Relations Institute (ACRI), University of Technology Sydney

China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) has been described as a tool with geoeconomic implications, if not intent. What does this mean and how should Australia respond?

Jane Golley joins James Laurenceson to discuss these issues. Jane Golley also offers her thoughts on the current state of the Australia-China relationship, including recent claims that China seeks to influence Australian political decision-making.

As China is one of the world’s largest economies, its economic tools, such as the BRI, are likely to have geopolitical consequences, regardless of intention. The Australian government’s response to the BRI to date has been suboptimal. The global market for Chinese capital is competitive, and it will be difficult for Australia to compete if it does not seek the information necessary to become engaged with the initiative.

Political donations and the growing influence of the Chinese government in Australia’s media and universities are concerning. However, facts are not always accurately reported, and responses are often ill-considered. Responses should be considered on a case-by-case basis, after comprehensive discussions with the relevant stakeholders.

Theme music by Sam J Mitchell.

August 10 2017