June 02, 2022
Mahuta rejects China-chase across Pacific
Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta says National and ACT’s response to China’s growing influence in the Pacific would make New Zealand look desperate.
Ms Mahuta is under fire for not following Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi around the region.
She says New Zealand has strong and enduring relations with Pacific nations.
“Sure we can always do better. That’s a challenge for every government and we should do better because they are our friends and neighbours but we don’t have to be desperate and I think both the criticism from National and ACT might be a little bit of a hangover from what they know they didn’t do,” Ms Mahuta says.
Labour has a large Pacific caucus and a record number of Pacific ministers in cabinet, and its relations with the region are deep and layered.