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How does China’s global strategic competition affect Australia

The federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg warned the Australians to tolerate the threat of the wealthy and powerful China that poses to the regional security.

According to Mr. Frydenberg at the ANU Crawford leadership forum that there was now “no doubt” that the environment of a global competition which is similar to that of the Cold War has returned.

“Heightened strategic competition is the new reality we must face both now and likely into the future,” the Treasurer said.

“There can be no doubt that strategic competition is back – it is a defining feature of the security and the economic landscape that we face.”

Australia will feel the burn of this new hostile environment which is due to the close economic relationship with China who remains the top trading partner in Australia, said by Mr. Frydenberg.

“In many ways, Australia is on the front line of this new strategic competition,” the Treasurer said.

“We have faced increasing pressure to compromise on our core values – and we have stood firm, as we always will.”

While there were some similarities between the Cold Ware era and the new China-dominated global environment of today, Mr. Frydenberg warned this in many ways that the current global environment will be even more complicated.

“We have faced strategic competition before, including during the Cold War, but there are more important differences,” Mr. Frydenberg said.

Mr. Frydenberg also mentioned that China has now become an international trading superpower while the Soviet Union has been cut off from the rest of the world during the Cold War.

“Almost 130 countries now have China as their leading and largest trading partner. This combination of economic weight, global integration and assertiveness poses new and significant challenges for many countries around the world – and Australia is no exception.”

Mr. Frydenberg has slammed Chine despite the close trade ties between the countries for its aggressive conduct in the international trade market. Where in July the Beijing ask for a 218 per cent of tax on the Aussie wine exports after the Chinese officials has accused the Australia of public “smearing” the country.

“We have been subjected to economic coercion,” Mr. Frydenberg declared on Monday.

“Competition does not have to lead to conflict. Nor does competition justify coercion.”

In accordance to the findings from the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, Mr. Frydenberg lamented the findings of China using a coercive tactics 152 times against 27 individual countries which includes Australia between the years 2010 and 2020.

Australia needs to make great efforts in achieving economic resilience in order to manage the volatile and reactionary nature of China’s global conduct, Mr. Frydenberg said.

“Given the changes in our external environment, there will be times when we must pay a premium to protect our economy and ensure long term economic resilience. It is also the case that Australian businesses will need to enhance their own resilience.”

The Aussie businesses who benefited the trade boom from Chinese-Australia were instructed by Mr. Frydenberg to continue to profit from the relationship but was warned to make a backup plan incase anything happened.

“Businesses also need to be aware that the world has changed and that creates greater uncertainty and risk,” he said.

“They should always be looking to diversify their markets, and not overly rely on any one country.”

Using the “China-plus strategy” in which the Australia would turn to other major trading partners such as the US and Japan for a greater trade opportunities. Mr. Frydenberg believed that despite a growing global tensions a safe and strong economic future is possible for the nation.

“Australia is on the front line of this new battleground, but we have shown great resilience to date,” he said.

“I am confident in our ability as a country and as an economy to withstand any shocks that we may face … this is a responsibility that we all need to take seriously.”

Article inspired from news.com.au authored by Josh Frydenberg

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