Friday 08 Oct 2021 | 04:57 | SYDNEY
Friday 08 Oct 2021 | 04:57 | SYDNEY

New Zealand and Australia grow closer


Fergus Hanson


16 February 2010 10:55

The Asia New Zealand Foundation has just released its annual Perceptions of Asia survey. One of the questions in the poll — on feelings towards people from other countries —  was very close to one included in the Lowy Institute Poll (which asks about feelings towards countries rather than people).

In both polls people were asked to rate their feelings on a 0 to 100 scale. The questions are not perfectly comparable but they do suggest a striking agreement across the Tasman about which countries/people we like better. In both polls Japan topped the list (of Asian states) followed by Thailand and India. In both Australia and New Zealand China and South Korean tied for next place followed by Indonesia.

Another interesting parallel was in a question asking New Zealanders to use a 1 to 5 scale to rate how important various regions were. Australia topped the ranking for New Zealanders (60% gave it a 5  meaning 'very important'), but next was Asia with 40%, while just 25% rated North America as very important.

The 2009 Lowy Institute Poll suggested Australians also saw Asia as very important compared with North America (at least in economic terms). Of three economies, 63% said China's was the most important to Australia at the moment, compared with just 27% for the US. 72% also said China will be more powerful after the global economic crisis than before and 40% that India will be more powerful, while a third said the US will be less powerful.