Robertson: PM's China visit will be good for our relationship

Newstalk ZB ,
Publish Date
Monday, 25 March 2019, 8:01p.m.
Grant Robertson says that he imagines Huawei will be on the agenda at the meeting between the leaders. (Photo / NZ Herald)

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's fleeting trip to China next week will be good to assess our relations.

The trip has been a long-time coming, but was scaled back to a 24-hour visit after the Christchurch mosque shooting.

Ardern announced at a press conference this afternoon that she will meet with President Xi Jinping, and will open the new New Zealand embassy. 

Finance Minister Grant Robertson says it will be a good opportunity to talk.

"They will have views about the global economy, and as the Prime Minister said today, this has taken a lot of organising so it is important she goes."

Robertson says it will be up to both countries what's discussed in regards to telco Huawei. Last year, the GCSB gave advice to Spark recommending they do not allow Huawei to take part in their 5G expansion. 

The minister says they have not been banned from the program yet. 

"We've been very clear there is a process in regards to 5G, and that hasn't been completed yet. Everyone has to go through that process, every country that wants to bid into that." 

He says they are being treated the same as any other applicant, and Ardern will reiterate that during her meeting. 

At the same press conference, Ardern announced a royal commission into the Christchurch mosque attack was inevitable.

Robertson says that was inevitable, and he says the unprecedented event has left a lot of questions lingering.

"We want to make sure that we get those answers about should we have known more, could we have done more, could we have known more, what role did the agencies play, what was their focus in terms of the security agencies."




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