Australia is pretty tolerant of ‘foreigners’. It has been a multicultural country for most of its history. Well, at least since the POMs
invaded landed at Botany Bay. As a nation, we suffer few phobias or xenophobia, whether it be Coronaphobia or Sinophobia.
That said, there is a rapidly expanding groundswell of Sinophobia (anti-China sentiment) in Australia.
For the most part, it is because we see COVID-19 as the Wuhan/China ‘bat’ virus. And our mainstream media says that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) engaged in a global coverup with deadly consequences.
The Australian Government has demanded a full and impartial inquiry into the virus origins. China’s recent aggressive response (threatening barley, meat and wine exports) has revealed its true colours. If there is nothing to hide a full impartial enquiry would clear China – end of story!
Coronaphobia is turning into Sinophobia, and it could see some significant changes in our economy and way of life.
GadgetGuy does not report on geopolitics – mass media do that so well. But we see it every day when readers increasingly ask us to include country of origin/ownership in our reviews. Simply put, they ask “How can we not buy China-made tech goods”.
South Korean companies such as Samsung or LG, or Taiwanese ones such as Acer and Asus are not China-made. But that is not really the whole solution.
Sam Bocetta, US Correspondent, and senior journalist has taken an in-depth look at what is going on in the USA. It is not pretty. Sam is not racist or xenophobic. As a journalist, he presents the facts as he finds them. Please note any quotes or images are reproduced under the Creative Commons provisions afforded to media.
Coronaphobia or Sinophobia?
Australia is way more open to ‘foreigners’ than the US. Interestingly while China is a significant owner/investor in Australia, the US is also a major investor.
There is one major difference.
The US has always been entirely transparent about its investments. That is because Australian Governments see the US as an ally
- committed to liberal-democratic values
- appreciate that US corporate interests are not necessarily monolithic
- or necessarily exercised by a single government ‘agenda’.
But not with China and its growing influence in owning
- Australia’s ports, airlines, banks, minerals, agriculture, primary production, housing, jobs, education and yes, toilet paper.
- Or it’s not so openly declared funding of universities, politics, think-tanks, various cultural or social endeavours to peddle its influence.
Let me explain. From March 2019, Australian ‘Foreign influence transparency laws’ came into play. Basically, these are to ensure that ‘foreign principals’ including governments, organisations, individuals and ‘entities’ are identified. These include
- who own >15% of a company’s shares or voting power
- or can appoint at least 20% of the company’s board of directors
- or otherwise, exercise substantial control
And they must declare their role in influencing governmental and political decision-making.
All of a sudden previously ‘faceless’ foreign influencers had to declare their hands and the extent of foreign ownership.
Chinese interests were exposed as the second-largest investor in Australia. Added to that were media reports of China’s influence extending to the grubby roots of local, state and federal politics.