Amid soaring tensions between Australia and China, Canberra has vowed to not give in to Beijing’s pressure. After China released a laundry list of complaints about the island nation, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison on November 19 insisted that it won’t bow down and said, “we won’t be compromising”. From 5G communications to foreign investment laws, Morrison told Channel Nine that Australia will not alter its own principles or the way the nation is run.
Australian PM’s stringent stance on its deteriorating bilateral relations with Beijing came after a Chinese government official reportedly told at least three media outlets on November 18 that “If you make China the enemy, China will be the enemy.” China has expressed its disagreement with a range of decisions taken by the Australian government, as per the dossier given by Chinese official to Australian media. What Morrison called an “unofficial document” and dismissed it, the list consisted of 14 grievances that Bejing holds including strict foreign interference laws and its ban on Huawei in nation’s 5G network along with other bans on “national security grounds”.
"We won't be compromising on the fact that we will set what our foreign investment laws are or how we build our 5G telecommunications networks or how we run our systems of protecting against interference Australia's way we run our country," he told Channel Nine.
Meanwhile, Beijing has said that Canberra should know what it needs to do to improve the relationship between both countries. According to the South China Morning Post, Chinese commerce minister Li Chengganga stated that Beijing has always upheld a pragmatic attitude when it comes to dealing with its trade partners, it is the Australian side, he said, which should know better what it needs to do in improving the ties.
Australia has in the recent past taken a stern position on issues concerning Beijing, island nation's largest trading partner. The strenuous change in Canberra's stance has been triggered over a range of issues such as China's alleged interference in Australia's domestic affairs, the COVID-19 pandemic, the dispute in the Indo-Pacific region.