Delegates find consensus at Australia-China High Level Dialogue

Reporting for The Australian, China correspondent Rowan Callick reports on a recent Australia-China High Level Dialogue in Beijing. China Matters Founding Director Linda Jakobson was part of the Australian delegation led by Future Fund chairman and former treasurer Peter Costello. Callick states that the constructive dialogue was symbolic of the current positive state of Australia-China relations, but noted that delegates acknowledged both countries need to work harder to grapple with the challenges of the transitioning economic partnership.

Read the report here.


What would Australia look like without China?

Shadow assistant treasurer Andrew Leigh explores what Australia’s economy might look like if China had not opened up to world markets in 1978. Leigh states that Australia’s economy would be almost 5 per cent smaller, universities would be $6 billion per annum poorer and the price of goods would be higher. He argues that those who advocate trade protectionism have not calculated the true costs to the Australian people.

This piece appeared in the Australian Financial Review.

Australia susceptible to Chinese soft power

ABC China correspondent Matthew Carney reports that China is increasing its soft power around the world through cultural influence with President Xi Jinping aiming to make China a ‘cultural superpower’. The article points to China’s soft power efforts in Australia through the establishment of Confucius Institutes and cites broader ambitions such as taking over Hollywood.

Read the ABC report here.

Penny Wong: Australia needs a better road map in Asia

Shadow minister for foreign affairs Senator Penny Wong argues that Australia must urgently review its foreign policy framework in Asia. Senator Wong states that the Australian Government’s forthcoming foreign policy white paper should clearly outline an independent foreign policy for Australia while maintaining a strong alliance relationship with the United States. Australian values such as openness, tolerance and cooperation should be the guiding principles of Australia’s approach to foreign affairs.

Read Senator Wong’s opinion piece in the Sydney Morning Herald.

Former Prime Minister Paul Keating: Australia’s future is in the region around us

In the wake of the US election, former Australian Prime Minister Paul Keating called for Australia to respond with a more independent, balanced foreign policy. Mr Keating said ‘Australia’s future is basically in the region around us in South East Asia’ and rather than follow American foreign policy under the incoming Trump Administration, Australia should ‘make our way in Asia ourselves’.

Watch Paul Keating’s interview on the ABC’s 7.30 program

Watch: Bates Gill on ‘China’s future under Xi Jinping’

On 9 November 2016, China Matters Board Director Professor Bates Gill delivered a talk at the Australian National University on China’s future under Xi Jinping and the challenges ahead. Professor Gill’s talk covered a range of challenges facing China’s leadership including its domestic reform agenda and returning to more stable relationships with its regional neighbours.

Watch Professor Gill’s talk:

Watch: ‘How to Respond to China’s Rise’


On 3rd November 2016, Linda Jakobson, Founding Director of China Matters, debated Hugh White, Author of The China Choice: Why America Should Share Power and Professor of Strategic Studies at the Australian National University. The debate was facilitated by Nick Bisley, Executive Director of La Trobe Asia and John Fitzgerald.

Watch Linda Jakobson debate Hugh White on ‘How to Respond to China’s Rise?’:

Audio link: