Australia's opposition Labor Party committed to free trade: Shadow FM

Source: Xinhua| 2017-07-06 14:23:03|Editor: Song Lifang
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CANBERRA, June 6 (Xinhua) -- Australia's opposition Labor Party would remain committed to free trade and globalization if it is elected at the next federal election, according to Shadow Foreign Minister, Penny Wong, on Thursday.

In a speech delivered at the Lowy Institute on Thursday, Wong said an open attitude to trade was in Australia's "national interest," and that the associated strong economic growth would have positive and wide-ranging social flow-on effects.

She added that Australia was currently reliant on an "open trading system" and that Labor understands and would support that viewpoint going forward, a policy which would break away from the Labor Party's traditional stance of supporting 'Australian first' mentalities.

"Barriers to trade and constraints on capital flows ultimately act against our national interest," Wong said.

"It is economic growth that delivers the improvements in human welfare, that lifts people out of poverty, and that creates the opportunities for future generations that are central to Labor's vision of a strong, prosperous, fair and just Australia."

Meanwhile speaking on Australia's two biggest economic and trading partners, China and the United States, Wong said it was imperative to maintain a "co-operative relationship" between the two, as "an antagonistic relationship would severely constrain our ability to exercise our choices."