Jacinda, ScoMo unite to stick it to Chinese spies

Caption: We’ve finally found something we agree on!

Credit where it?s due: Jacinda Ardern is making the right call on Huawei. The Chinese telco run by a former Peoples? Liberation Army general is the cyber wing of the Chinese Communist Party. One of its key strategies is undermining the Five Eyes intelligence alliance. Giving them a backdoor to critical infrastructure like the 5G network would be a grave mistake.

This is one foreign policy initiative, at least, that Ardern and Australian prime minister Scott Morrison see eye-to-eye on. Quote:

Scott Morrison and Jacinda Ardern are set to discuss ways to secure telecommunications networks in the wake of both countries? respective Huawei bans ? which has seen New Zealand join Australia in China?s diplomatic freezer.

Meeting for annual talks in Auckland today, the leaders are also set to discuss Australia?s new medivac laws for asylum-seekers, announce a new symposium on ?smart cities? and more co-operation on cutting red tape for trans-Tasman businesses.

The Kiwis are having diplomatic troubles with China after the country followed Canberra in banning Huawei from providing equipment to local company Spark?s 5G telecommunications network.

A government source said the two prime ministers would discuss how best to secure government and business data in the wake of the decision to exclude the Chinese technology maker and also how to allow the use of emerging technologies such as AI, robotics, block chain and quantum computing while developing ?appropriate strategic safeguards?. End of quote.

China is notorious for bullying smaller nations if the bribery development offers and charm offensives fail. They?ve been used to getting their way in New Zealand ? finally being told ?no? has brought out the bully. Quote:

In recent years, New Zealand has had a calmer relationship with China in the absence of a campaign such as Australia?s against Beijing?s foreign interference. So much so, some US national security hawks believed New Zealand was not vigilant enough.

Some of the country?s export markets ? such as dairy ? are heavily reliant on Chinese consumers. End of quote.

Still, it wasn?t all hugs and China-bashing. The issue of sending Kiwi crims packing also came up. Quote:

Ms Ardern or her officials could also raise the issue of the increased number of criminal deportations of New Zealand citizens from Australia, which has become a domestic political issue.

The Morrison government has been pushing to stand up a further law that New Zealand said could increase the number of deportations and damage bilateral relations. But it is yet to pass, as Labor opposes legislation expanding the government?s ability to revoke the visas of criminals by lowering the threshold for a deportation.

Australian and New Zealand officials are also expected to discuss ways to make doing business between the countries easier.

In particular, the countries hope to align Australia and New Zealand?s approach to e-invoicing, as the nations consider creating an e-invoicing board to provide advice and written reports to ministers on issues related to its implementation. End of quote.


So, yep, it feels weird to be praising young Cindy, but she?s making a surprisingly sound decision, here.