Leader of the opposition in the Australian senate Penny Wong gives a speech to the Lowy institute in Sydney, Australia, May 1, 2019. Wong said on Wednesday that China is vital to the future of Australia. (Xinhua/Hao Yalin)
SYDNEY, May 1 (Xinhua) -- Leader of the opposition in the Australian senate Penny Wong said on Wednesday that China is vital to the future of Australia.
In a speech to the Lowy institute on Wednesday, Wong, who also serves as the shadow foreign minister, told her audience that despite the differences between the countries, "the China relationship is a critical relationship for Australia -- it is both complex and consequential."
"Labor's approach to foreign policy will bring a more considered, disciplined and consistent approach to the management of Australia's relationship with China."
Wong described the current international climate as one of change and shifting power, emphasizing the need for cohesion and the embracing of diversity.
While she acknowledged that at times there might be differences of approach between the countries, engagement is crucial for understanding to be reached.
"In this next phase in the relationship, we believe that engagement remains in best interests of Australia and China," she said.
"We will be clear about where Australia and China's interests come together."
She called on all stakeholders, including government, business, industry and Australia's Chinese communities to lend their voice towards a "deeper engagement where our interests coincide and to manage difference constructively."